The West of Scotland Angling Club Election Ballot Box, 1880
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Measurements: Overall: 33.5cm (13.25in) x 33cm (13in) x 28cm (11in)
Mahogany ballot box marked ‘Yes’ and ‘No’ to the exterior, with circular hand hole to the triangular pediment for eighteen voting balls, over ‘Reject’ and ‘Admit’ velvet lined drawers. The top further labelled ‘Reject’ and ‘Admit’. The facade applied with brass plaque inscribed ‘The Property of the / West of Scotland Angling Club’.
The West of Scotland Angling Club was founded in 1834 at the Waterloo Tavern, Glasgow and held annual competitions for fly and bait fishing. Piscatorial pursuits took place on the Clyde and Loch Lomond. The bait fishing never caught on and the members quickly confined their activities to the fly. Club meetings were held at various Glaswegian hostelries and were convivial affairs as evinced by the club’s minute book which recorded the high cost of the entertainment and the late hour of adjournment. The fourth monthly meeting of 1843 was a notable exception. The secretary, Mr McSymon, finding himself the sole attendee, treated himself to a glass of toddy and dissolved the meeting. McSymon later emigrated to New York and, not forgetting his friends, sent them a barrel of oysters each year on the occasion of the annual club dinner. Early members included the Glasgow M.P. George Anderson, the Provost of Govan James Wilson, and the distinguished Scottish portrait painter Sir Daniel Macnee, grandfather of the actor Patrick Macnee best known for playing John Steed in the 1960s TV series The Avengers.