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Papers and correspondence of Daniel John Cunningham

Identifier: Coll-11

Scope and Contents

The papers cover the years 1876 to 1910 and contains a great many autograph letters from eminent anatomists and medical men, including ten letters from Joseph Lister. There is also a substantial sequence of notebooks and working papers containing detailed notes of experiments and dissections together with drawings and drafts for lectures, and a separate sequence of manuscripts for lectures and addresses. An item of particular interest is an album of 96 photographs from Cunningham's service on the South African War Royal Commission. The subjects include army camps and infirmaries, railroads and the native population. Many of the documents bear annotations by Cunningham's son, John.


  • Creation: c 1876-1910


Language of Materials


Biographical / Historical

Cunningham was born at Crieff, Perth, and educated at the Morrison's Academy, Crieff, and Edinburgh University graduating M.B. in 1874. He was Demonstrator in Anatomy at Edinburgh, 1876-1882, and Professor of Anatomy at the Royal College of Surgeons of Ireland, 1882, at Dublin University, 1883-1903, and at Edinburgh University, 1903-1909. He carried out original research in human and comparative anatomy as well as in the wider field of anthropology including giantism and right-handedness and left-brainedness. He undertook a number of important public duties including service in 1900 with the Royal Commission on the Care of the Sick and the Wounded during the South African War. He was elected FRS in 1891.


7 boxes


  1. Biographical material;
  2. Notebooks and working papers;
  3. Lectures, speeches and addresses;
  4. Advisory boards and committees;
  5. Correspondence;
  6. Publications.

Physical Location


Other Finding Aids

Printed catalogue of the papers of Professor Daniel J. Cunningham FRS, FRSE (1850-1909) by J. Alton and H. Weiskittel, CSAC catalogue no. 42/6/76, 11 pp (Edinburgh 'Handlist 11'). Copies available from NCUACS, University of Bath. Original catalogue by the Contemporary Scientific Archives Centre. Contains an index of correspondents.

Custodial History

Received for cataloguing in 1975 by the Contemporary Scientific Archives Centre from Cunningham's grandchildren.

Immediate Source of Acquisition

Accession E.76/30

Processing Information

Catalogued by Graeme Eddie, converted to this version 14 Sep 2012. Full catalogue uploaded into ArchivesSpace by Aline Brodin in June 2021, with permission from the University of Bath.

Papers of Daniel John Cunningham
Language of description
Script of description

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