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13 George Street

(No 7 until 1811)

3 SeptemberCharter from Edinburgh Town Council to James Hunter, merchant, Edinburgh. Hunter paid £150 stg. of purchase money for that plot of ground No. 4, letter A of north plot No. 1 on George's Street measuring 40ft in front and 142ft deep. James Hunter disposed of 10ft in front of the said plot and the back ground [issuing?] thereto equally betwixt George Cowan and Thomas Heriot wrights in Edinburgh, the feuars immediately to the west of the said James Hunter for payment of a proportion of the purchase money. The terms of sale recorded in an Act of the Council dated 20 October 1767, whereby the remaining 30ft of frontage cost £112 10s. It was bounded as follows: on the E by the feu of Sir William Forbes, Bt., on the W by the plot of ground feued by said George Cowan on the N by the mews lane and on the S by George Street, with cellars under the street along George Street. £2 5s of feu duty pa. and the sum of £6 upon the entry of each successor. Signed and witnessed, 1 May 1776 [City Archives, Charters]

13 May: Disposition by Mrs. Katherine Bruce or Heriot and others, trustees of the late Thomas Heriot to Richard Bempde Johnstone and Mrs. Katherine Johnstone [From an inventory of processes lodged with an application to the Edinburgh Dean of Guild Court dated 22 December 1898]

September: Charter of resignation from the Magistrates and the Town Council of Edinburgh to Richard Bempde Johnstone and Mrs. Katherine Johnstone. 4 September Sasine in favour of same, registered 27 October 1788 [From an inventory of processes as above]

o. 7 occupied by Miss Seton [Aitchison's Directory for Edinburgh Edinburgh 1795] Which one on which side?

19 May: Disposition by Alex Young WS, for Richard Bempde Johnstone to William Erskine, advocate.[From an inventory of processes as above]

17 July: Trust disposition by William Erskine WS in favour of Mrs. Euphemia Robison and others.
 Registered 22 October 1822. [From an inventory of processes as above]

27 December: Sasine in favour of John James Erskine and Alex Young as trustees of William Erskine WS. Registered 29 December. [From an inventory of processes as above]

5 May: Disposition by John James Erskine and Alex Young to William Whyte bookseller. Registered 10 May. [From an inventory of processes as above]
13 July [Date of warrant, extracted 16 August]: Application to the Edinburgh Dean of Guild Court by William Whyte, bookseller for alterations at 'the east end of St. Andrew's Church'. This  included an addition at the rear. Petition lodged on 12 July 1824. Single sheet drawing initialled JT

8 December: Charter of confirmation by the Magistrates of Edinburgh to William Whyte. [From an inventory of processes as above]

12 December: Sasine in favour of William Whyte. Recorded 21 December. [From an inventory of processes as above]

Occupied by William Whyte & Co. booksellers [to Her Majesty, 1834] [The Edinburgh Journal or Weekly Register, Vol V, pp. 25, 26 and 54 of adverts]

Occupied by W. Whyte & Co. bookseller [Edinburgh POD]

Occupied by W. Whyte & Co. booksellers to the Queen dowager; Misses Bruce, milliners [Edinburgh POD]
6 May: Typewritten Minute of Agreement between William White and John Pringle, Sheriff substitute of Banff, proprietor of 11 George Street, regarding alterations to their mutual wall [From an inventory of processes as above]
25 May: Application to the Edinburgh Dean of Guild Court by W. Whyte for alterations 'behind' 13 George Street

13 Rose Court [?] occupied by: 4, Wm. Clerk advocate; W. Marshall & Sons, plumbers; 2, Robert Jeffrey engraver; 3 J & A Anderson, goldsmith [Edinburgh POD]

13 June: Typewritten Minute of Agreement between Messrs. Richard Whytock, proprietor of 9 and 11 George Street and William Whyte, prop. of No. 13. Whytock applied at this date to pull down and re-build his tenement and Whyte objected. The architects, Messrs Wilson and Lessels came to an agreement: as long as the new building to George Street is restricted to the centre of the recess in the front wall or iron railing of the front area, William Whyte consents to the cornice projecting beyond this line as shown on plan but that it can be removed by Whyte or his successors at the pleasure of William Whyte. He agrees to heightening the gable as long as new vents are at Whytock's expence [From an inventory of processes lodged with an application to the Edinburgh Dean of Guild Court dated 22 December 1898]

15 October: Registration of sasine in favour of Robert Paul and others, trustees of William Whyte. [From an inventory of processes as above]
10 November: Disposition by Robert Paul to Robert Stewart and others, trustees for the behoof of the Clydesdale Banking Company. Recorded 18 November with a writ of confirmation dated 11 January 1859. [From an inventory of processes as above]
3 December: Application to the Edinburgh Dean of Guild Court by Clydesdale Banking Group for alterations. Conterminous heritors on east areTrustees of the late Richard Whytock, of whom William McCrie is one. Drawing signed and dated 15 November 1858, David McGibbon.

9 November: Disposition by Robert Stewart and others in favour of Royal Insurance Company. Recorded 14 November [From an inventory of processes as above]

2 July [Date of Warrant, extracted 9 July]: Application to the Edinburgh Dean of Guild Court by Royal Insurance Company, lodged 20 June 1863.  For alterations to the west gable; to erect 2 lamp posts and a railing in front. To alter the windows in the west gable and run mouldings around these with a cornice along the top and other ornaments in cement. Conterminous proprietors- Messrs. Alexander and James Whytock at 9 and 11 George Street. A single sheet drawing dated '89 George Street and signed David McGibbon'.

27 April: [Date of warrant, lodged 15 April] Application to the Edinburgh Dean of Guild Court by Royal Insurance Company to enlarge a lavatory on the first floor. Drawing signed Robert A. Stanforth 37 York Place, April 1893.

Application to the Edinburgh Dean of Guild Court by the Royal Insurance Company to demolish 13 George Street and re-build a tenement of six floors. Interim warrant extracted 16 June, 22 August and final warrant extracted 22 December. An inventory of legal titles attached here and copied into timeline above. Two sets of drawings signed George Beattie & Son, May 1898, 9 sheets. Set two, dated October 1898, 6 sheets.

W.Whyte 16 August 1824 Elevation towards St Andrew's Church
These drawings are initialled JT. This may refer to John Tait [c.1787-1856] who made additions to Kerse House in 1830 for the 1st Earl of Zetland. He may have begun his career as a clerk in William Playfair's office [See EUL Mss DC.3.73] However, there was a James Tait [c.1762-1834] described as an architect on his monument in St. Cuthbert's Churchyard and whose son William Tait [1793-1864] became a publisher. He designed buildings in Shandwick Place, Edinburgh. This may be the author of the drawings in view of the occupation of William Whyte. [See Colvin]

Historic Scotland List
13 George Street on corner site fronting [??] St Andrew's and St George's Church; 4-storey and attic early Renaissance. Polished cream sandstone ashlar. Round-headed windows at ground, entablature to ground and 1st floors. 1st floor windows pilastered with cill course. 2nd floor windows with alternating canted bays and segmental and triangular pediments, flat bays with balustraded aprons to windows; 2nd and 3rd floors with giant order panelled corner pilasters; entablature with modillioned cornice. 3-bay GEORGE STREET ELEVATION with engaged granite Doric columns at ground and triglyph frieze; pediment above former 2-leaf panelled door to right. Upper floors with canted centre bay. 3-bay attic storey, diminutive version of ground floor supported by lateral consoles, and surmounted by massive pediment with oculus and 3 statues. 5-bay W ELEVATION with inner bays of upper floors canted. Gabled attic; 3-bay central section pilastered with entablature and parapet, balustraded at centre; round-headed aedicule windows with alternate segmental and triangular pediments. INTERIOR: rebuilt retaining principal entrance, stair and boardrooms of original block. Panelled Entrance Hall containing straight flight of marble steps to principal level; mirrored aedicule on axis at upper level; groin-vaulted ceiling. Arcaded contrasting marble Hall with Ionic pilasters and 2-bay screen to former Telling Room; black and white marble floor; Baroque broken pediment to Entrance Hall. Principal stairhall and landings with fine timber panelling, pedimented doors; cantilevered stair rises to 2nd floor, with quarter landings, painted stone treads and square timber balusters; lit by elaborate glazed dome. At 1st floor, panelled Boardroom on corner with compartmented ceiling; tiered chimneypiece with acanthus scrolls supporting Ionic capitals and frieze, and upper tier with Ionic columns supporting stepped broken segmental pediment; marble slips and hearth; original furniture and Steell bust, 1865; 3 wrought-iron chandeliers; brass radiator grilles in windows. Managing Director's room similarly finished.
Windows of former No 13 at ground with fluted pilasters. Timber sash and case plate glass windows. Ashlar coped skews; grey slates.

JEFFREY, Robert engraver and printer Edinburgh
North Bridge, entry by Halkerston's Wynd, 163 High Street 1824-25
5 Milne's Square 1826-27
125 High Street 1828-30
6 Milne Square 1831-35
7 Milne Square 1836
22 Hanover Street 1837-39
23 Hanover Street 1840
3 Hanover Street 1841
2 Rose court 1842-45
2 North St David's Street 1846
13 Frederick Street 1847-48
72 Northumberland Street 1849-54
116 Rose Street 1855-61
127 Rose Lane 1862
135 Rose Lane 1863 [NLS, Edinburgh Book Trade Index] Robert Jeffrey was one of the jurors at the trial of Bourke and Hare on 28 December 1828 p. 102 and 133.