Preliminary research, funded by the Carnegie Trust, the Bibliographical Society and the Printing Historical Society has enabled initial research into aspects related to the transnational migration, circulation and skills exchange of Scottish printers in the nineteenth and early twentieth century.
The development of effective typographical societies and unions in Scotland dates back to 1836, when the Scottish Typographical Association (STA) was founded. It, and its ancillary chapters in major printing towns and cities such as Glasgow, Aberdeen, Dundee, Paisley and Edinburgh, served on behalf of the Scottish workforce to police their activities, lobby for better wages and working conditions and build solidarity with other craftspeople. It also developed networks for supporting the movement of skilled compositors and journeymen between union centres regionally, nationally and internationally. It is this network of inter-related associations that lies at the heart of this project. A work-in-progress piece on the subject can be read here.