Skip to main content

Papers of William Hutton Marwick

Identifier: Coll-219

Scope and Contents

The collection consists of: correspondence, personal papers and diaries, in particular letters to Marwick from his family and others referring to personal matters, to Marwick's editorship of publications and to the Ruskin Reading Guild, and on occasion to his work in Scotland and at the mission in Old Calabar (1881-1901); letters to Miss Elizabeth Hutton, who was later to become Marwick's wife, some about her appointment as a missionary at Old Calabar (1891-1899); the diaries of Marwick (1892, 1895) and his wife (1891-1894) with details of their life at Old Calabar; papers and reports on the mission and on Marwick's literary work; and miscellaneous items such as bills and a resolution (1887) of the Christian Socialist Society.


  • Creation: 1881-1901

Language of Materials


Conditions Governing Access

Generally open for consultation to bona fide researchers, but please contact repository for details in advance.

Conditions Governing Use

Contact the repository for details.

Biographical / Historical

William Hutton Marwick, missionary at the United Presbyterian mission at Old Calabar, West Africa, was born in 1863 the son of William Marwick a solicitor from Edinburgh. He was educated at Arbroath High School and later at Edinburgh University and the United Presbyterian Training College in Edinburgh. One of his first posts was as an assistant at Lossiemouth Manse from 1887-1888. He found it difficult to secure a permanent vacancy and spent some time travelling to the Orkneys and pursuing literary interests. In particular he organised the Ruskin Reading Guild and edited journals such as theRuskin Journal,World LiteratureandIgdrasil. He was also the founder and the first secretary of the Carlisle Society. He was ordained by the World Congregational Church in Dundee in 1890. In 1892 he was appointed a missionary at Calabar where he met Miss Elizabeth Hutton who had been a missionary there since 1891. In 1893 Marwick became ill and returned to Scotland to recover where he was joined by Miss Hutton. The two were married in December 1893 and returned to the mission in 1894 but his appointment was terminated in the same year for health reasons and they did not return to Calabar again until 1898. Marwick's interest in literature continued and in 1897 his bookWilliam and Louisa Anderson, A Record of their Life and Work in Jamaica and Old Calabarwas published. He also taught himself Efik and in 1899 he prepared a bilingual (Efik and Akunakuna) service book. The Marwicks travelled to Scotland on leave in 1900 expecting to return to Calabar but found that the Foreign Mission Committee of the United Free Church of Scotland wished to change the terms under which Marwick was employed. Marwick went instead as a missionary to Jamaica (1901-1910?) and was later a civil chaplain at Meerut, Northern India (1912-1915?). Marwick died in Edinburgh in 1940.


1 box


The material is in one box and comprises: a bundle of correspondence in broadly chronological order (106 letters, Gen. 768/1); a file of papers concerned mainly with Marwick's missionary and literary work,1892-1901 (Gen. 768/2); and six volumes of diaries, 1891-1895 (Gen. 768/3-8).

Physical Location

Gen. 768

Other Finding Aids

Alphabetical Index to Manuscripts held at Edinburgh University Library, Special Collections and Archives, extracts from this index which describe some of the items in the collection are filed with the collection in box Gen. 768. Not all of the items are mentioned in the index. The collection is mentioned in the Edinburgh University Library subject checklist (C3) Manuscripts on Africa.

Immediate Source of Acquisition

The papers were presented to Edinburgh University in 1964 by Dr W.H. Marwick, Edinburgh, the son of the Marwicks.

Related Materials

Edinburgh University New College Library holds some material relating to the mission at Calabar (MSS CALA and MSS BOX 52.5.1-6.) and Edinburgh University Library Special Collections has a letter of Mary Slessor (Gen. 766/6, most of the Slessor papers are at Dundee) and an album of illustrations of the Calabar mission (Gen. 827F). The National Library of Scotland holds the papers of William Anderson and other missionaries including letters from Marwick.

Papers of William Hutton Marwick (1863-1940)
Language of description
Script of description
Code for undetermined script

Repository Details

Part of the University of Edinburgh Library Heritage Collections Repository

Centre for Research Collections
University of Edinburgh Main Library
George Square
Edinburgh EH8 9LJ Scotland
+44(0)131 650 8379