A summary of the history of the Govan Parish Young Men’s Association is available on our sister website, Glasgow’s Literary Bonds (see ‘Additional Notes’ below).
This association held its first ‘Manuscript Magazine Evening’ on 6 December 1892. These meetings took place about once a session thereafter. They were specifically ‘Members’ Meetings’, as opposed to those that were open to the public (e.g. lectures, dramatic recitals, concerts and musical evenings), which suggests that the contributions and the discussion that followed were intended solely for this select audience. The titles of the contributions were not always listed in the minutes, and in some cases, it was not possible to discern the subject of the piece from its title. The last Magazine Evening recorded in the minutes took place on 3 December 1907, when only two papers were read, one entitled ‘Literary Style’, and the other called ‘Modern Literature’.
‘Magazine Evenings’, ‘Magazine Nights’, or even ‘Manuscript Magazine Nights’ were meetings that were devoted to the reading of original essays (or occasionally poems) written by group members that were submitted to the Magazine Editor beforehand. The Editor would be responsible for collecting, occasionally selecting, and reading the pieces aloud to the group (more rarely this was done by the contributor him/herself) on the appointed night. This would be followed by ‘criticism’ — or discussion on the piece’s positive and negative points — by the group members.
After the meetings, these contributions were sometimes bound and saved in the society’s library (if they had one) or would be kept by one of the office bearers. In these cases, it was intended that the magazine was to be preserved and that group members would have access to it at a later date. It is of note that literary and mutual improvement groups used the term ‘magazine’ to refer to the oral as well as the material medium.
Name of Club, Society or Group That Produced the Magazine
Govan Parish Young Men’s Association (later became the Govan Parish Young Men’s Literary Association) (Glasgow)
Date of Existence
11 Oct. 1876-?
Date of Magazine
Number of Issues
Magazine Evenings (unknown if contributions were preserved)
(Presumably unpublished manuscripts)
Contents and Contributions
(presumably non-fiction articles and essays)
Glasgow City Archives
1. Govan Parish Young Men’s Association Minute Book, 1886-92 (CH2/1277/50);
2. Govan Parish Young Men’s Association Minute Book, 1892-1903 (CH2/1277/51);
3. Govan Parish Literary Association Minute Book, 1903-1913 (CH2/1277/52)