Set of miniature Highland bagpipes

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possibly by J. and R. Glen, Edinburgh, c. 1875

Postcard of Set of miniature Highland bagpipes.
© National Museums Scotland

Set of miniature Highland bagpipes

Set of miniature Highland bagpipes possibly by J. and R. Glen of Edinburgh, c. 1875. Three drones are set in individual stocks; bass drone with three joints; two tenor drones each with two joints. Laburnum with simple combing decoration turned in sets of six rings, nickel mounts. Blowpipe fitted with synthetic mounts. The chanter is missing. Sheepskin bag with green woollen cover. Formerly stock of J. and R. Glen, Edinburgh, or from the collection of the firm's proprietors.

John and Robert Glen were the proprietors of a bagpipe-making and musical instrument repair business in Edinburgh in the late 19th century. The business was founded in 1827 in the Cowgate, moving later to North Bank Street, Edinburgh, by their father, Thomas McBean Glen (1804-1873), who in 1833 described himself in the business directories of the city as 'pipe and flute maker'. His sons, John (1833-1904) and Robert (1835-1911), took over the business in 1866. In 1911, the premises moved to 497 Lawnmarket where it survived as 'J & R Glen, Highland Bagpipe Makers' until 1978.

This piece comes from the Glen and Ross Collection of musical instruments which were preserved in the shop of 'J & R Glen, Highland Bagpipe Makers' until it closed about 1978. This was the business founded in 1827 by Thomas McBean Glen in the Cowgate in Edinburgh, dealing in and repairing musical instruments. His brother, Alexander Glen, specialized in bagpipe-making and was succeeded by his son David. Thomas' sons, John and Robert Glen, succeeding to the business in 1866, probably did most to collect instruments and their antiquarian interests were carried on by Andrew Ross who acquired the business from the Glens in 1947. The National Museum of Antiquities of Scotland purchased the bagpipe collections from the family in 1983.

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Online ID: 000-000-580-006-C
Image Rights Holder: National Museums Scotland
Project: 0869: The Bagpipe Collection
Project description | View all records in project
Ref: National Museums Scotland  K.2003.808
Date: c.1875 (date of manufacture)
Material: Laburnum, nickel, sheepskin and green wool
Dimensions: Bass drone 442 mm L; tenor drones 340 mm L; blowpipe 334 mm L
Who: Andrew Ross (successor to John and Robert Glen)
Glen and Ross Collection (musical instrument collection)
J. and R. Glen, Highland Bagpipe Makers (possible manufacturer)
Reid School of Music, University of Edinburgh (place of display)
Where: Scotland, Edinburgh (possible place of manufacture)
Description: Laburnum and nickel mounted set of miniature Highland bagpipes with sheepskin bag with green woollen cover.
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