Archive Catalogue

A fully searchable Archive Catalogue is under development and will appear here when available.  Until this development is complete, the full CRA Archive Catalogue is available as a PDF.

Archive Catalogue Structure

The Catalogue has been constructed to provide an easy-to-use guide to the records held in the CRA Archive Collection. It attempts to avoid jargon and misleading or confusing terms and unnecessary abbreviations. The few abbreviations that are used are explained below or in the heading of the section they specifically refer to.

Every item in the collection carries a prefix CRA and to catalogue every item held in the Archive a series of levels of subdivision have been used, with each level separated by a /. The first two levels are set out in detail below providing an overview of the collection. This will give you a general idea of where to begin to look for the material you wish to find, or give you an idea of where you might prefer to browse.

Level 3 is the Main Catalogue listing for each of these subsections e.g. CRA3/1 Timetables:

CRA3/1/1 Public Timetables and Information
CRA3/1/2 Working Timetables
CRA3/1/3 Combined Bound Volumes
CRA3/1/4 Appendices to Timetables
CRA3/1/5 Mineral Timetables
CRA3/1/6 Timetable Posters

Level 4 lists individual items within the above subdivisions.

Detailed Item Listings for certain parts of the archive form the final level of subdivision, when there are so many items held under one number that it would be totally unwieldy to list every single individual record in the catalogue. These Detailed Item Listings are indicated as blue hyperlinks, this is especially relevant for drawings/plans and photographs, (clicking on this hyperlink will open the Detailed Item list).

Detailed Item Listings formats are also utilised for tabulations generated as part of the ongoing research – Accidents (CRA3/6/1); Staff database (CRA5/2/2); Historical Publication Articles (CRA9/2).

The Archive is broadly split according to type of item; sections 2-5 documents; section 6 plans; section 7 photographs; section 8 maps; section 9 published materials. Sometimes items related to one subject may be held in different places within the catalogue; for example, if there is a particular station you are interested in it may be best to start at CRA/3/10 Station Paperwork, and then possibly find the drawings for the station under CRA/6/2 and photographs under CRA/7/4.

Every heading in the catalogue has an archival number and, if necessary, a brief description of the types of material you can find within it. Each entry into the catalogue consists of an Archival Number, a Description and a Date. The Detailed Item Listings also include additional fields such as Location, Drawing Number, etc.

In the description there are occasionally abbreviations in bold font. Their presence by a catalogued item indicates that the record was created by that railway company, and not by the Caledonian Railway. The main examples are:

LMS London Midland & Scottish Railways BR British Railways
SNER Scottish North Eastern Railway SCR Scottish Central Railway
GSWR Glasgow & South Western Railway NBR North British Railway
HR Highland Railway RCH Railway Clearing House

Also in the description there may be text in italic font. These notes relate to the format of the record, or where it has come from. CD means the item is on CD Rom, copy indicates that the item is a modern photocopy of the original. Other italicised text is notes added by the catalogue compiler as background information to assist the researcher, e.g. poor quality image.

Occasionally there is another reference number [in bold] - this indicates that the item is a copy of an item held elsewhere, most likely at the National Archives of Scotland.

Sometimes one reference number is used for multiple items. This is indicated by a note after the description in the catalogue.

Items which are held as digital file and those having a digital copy in the Archive are indicated {DI}

Title: Caledonian Railway Association Archive

Reference: CRA

Dates of creation:1840 – date

Extent: 22 metres

Name of creator: Caledonian Railway Association (railway association: 1983-: Glasgow, Scotland)

Administrative history:

The Caledonian Railway Association (CRA) was established 1983 to promote the study, acquisition and preservation of information, documents, illustrations and artefacts relating to the Caledonian Railway, its constituents and successor companies and to facilitate research into the history of the Company, by fostering the collation and dissemination of the information collected.

The CRA publishes a quarterly Journal The True Line (free to members) and hosts talks in Glasgow on first Saturday of October, November, December and February. Membership is open to all and the membership year is from 1st May.

The Caledonian Railway Company, Scotland, was incorporated by the Caledonian Railway Act of 1845. The line provided a service from Carlisle, England, to Glasgow, Edinburgh and Greenhill (near Castlecary), Scotland.

The first section of the railway between Carlisle and Beattock, Dumfries & Galloway, Scotland, was opened in 1847. The line was completed to Glasgow and Edinburgh, along with line to Castlecary, Stirlingshire in 1848 where it joined the Scottish Central Railway. The line to Glasgow utilised the earlier railways Glasgow, Garnkirk & Coatbridge, and the Wishaw & Coltness, which it purchased in 1846 and 1849 respectively.

Scope and content:

The Archive has been brought together by the Caledonian Railway Association.  The records catalogued under reference CRA1 were created by the Association in the course of its business.

The remainder of the Archive encompasses the records of the Caledonian Railway Company, its constituent (including the Canals, Docks and Steamers companies), its successor companies and records of other organisations and individuals which relate to the history of the Caledonian Company.

The Archive encompasses:

  •  Records of the Caledonian Railway Association
  •  Records relating to the Caledonian Railway Company:
  •  Company Records, including Acts of Parliament establishing railway companies, 1830-1927
  •  Operating Records, including timetables, notices and circulars, 1840-1974
  •  Promotional Records, 1850s-1940s
  •  Staff Records, 1890-1939
  •  Drawings and Plans of locomotives, rolling  stock, railway lines, stations and property
  •  Photographs of locomotives, rolling stock, stations and property, and staff
  •  Maps of railways and canals, 1846-1967
  •  Publications relating to railway history, 1861- 2012

Conditions governing access:

All records open with the exception of CRA1/1, CRA1/2, CRA1/3 and CRA1/4.  Access to these series with the permission of the CRA Committee.

Conditions governing use:

Requests to publish or reproduce records for a commercial purpose must be referred to the Caledonian Railway Association

Archival history:

Managed by the Caledonian Railway Association; stored at Glasgow University Archive Services

Immediate source of acquisition:

Initial deposit from J.D. MacIntosh, Chairman, Caledonian Railway Association; further deposits from T. McGhie, D. Blevins, Archivists, Caledonian Railway Association.

Details of individual deposits of records to the Caledonian Railway Association can be found in the Register of Donations (ref: CRA1/4/1).

System of arrangement:

The Records of the Caledonian Railway Association are arranged into series in line with its functions.

The records relating to the Caledonian Railway Company are arranged into artificial series in line with administrative functions generally in chronological order, with the exception of the Drawings and Plans, Photographs and Maps series, which are arranged by record type.


Dave Luck, CRA Cataloguing Assistant (Placement), Glasgow University Archive Services, David Blevins, Archivist. (updated by Jim MacIntosh)

Date(s) of descriptions: December 2010, updated June 2011, May 2012 and June 2013


Archive Catalogue – Main Section Headings





Constitution and formal papers, including charity registration



Minutes of AGM and Committee



Annual Accounts and Financial Records



Collection Listings



The True Line, Journal of the Caledonian Railway Association



Reprints of Company Documents (available for purchase)



CRA Publications



Reference Books, CRA Library



Digital Back-up of Records and Catalogue Files



                          RECORDS OF THE CALEDONIAN RAILWAY Company                  








Legal Records



Records of Executive Management



Financial Records










Special Notices and Alterations to Timetables



Operating Rules and Regulations



Rolling Stock Construction and Maintenance



Operational Paperwork






Line and Rail Engineering



Station Paperwork



Staff Circulars/Notices



Canals, Docks and Steamers







Guide Books and Tourist Maps (including Steamers)









Official Records



Biographical Notes (including photos of individuals)



Photographs of Staff Groups






Rolling Stock



Buildings, including Piers



Track Plans and Layout Diagrams



Bridges and Infrastructure



Permanent Way



Signalling Layouts and Signal Boxes



Canals and Docks



Drawings on CD (as referenced in lists 1 to 6 above)






Rolling Stock



Stations and Buildings



Bridges and Infrastructure






Official Event Photographs



Caledonian Steam Packet Co  Steamers



Canals and Docks






Caledonian Company Maps of Railways, Canals, Property



Ordnance Survey Maps with Caledonian Railways, Canals and Property



Railway Clearing House Maps, Junctions Diagrams, Instructions and Publications






Contemporary General Railway, Business Publications



Journal,  Newspaper and Magazine Reports and Extracts



Resource Packs, Information Portfolios


The primary sort sequence in each catalogue section is the date of origin, which may result in the Archival Reference Numbers being out of sequence. However this does not apply to sections CRA6 Drawings and CRA7 Photographs.

Certain items within the Archive have been reproduced/reprinted and are available for purchase. These are listed in CRA1/6 and referenced to the original in the form [CRA3/1/2/1]. Within the main catalogue listing the availability of a reproduction copy is indicated in the format Sale item CRA1/6/1.

The full CRA Archive Catalogue is available as a PDF. Alternatively visit each of the nine primary sections by clicking on the links above; this will give further direct access to the detailed lists referred to in each section of the catalogue.

The Archive Collection has been put together by past and present enthusiasts who are members of the Caledonian Railway Association (CRA). It consists of records that have been donated to and bought by the CRA, and the CRA Committee will consider any donations depending upon the suitability and relevancy of the material.

  The Association is keen to acquire further additions, and new items as donations or acquisitions will be most welcome.  

 We would also make a plea to all those who rescued records, photographs or drawings, as the old railway organisations were dismantled, to reconsider if these items are best stored in your loft, cellar, or even below the bed. Can the Association or the University Archive staff help you secure a safe and long term storage option for your treasures?