Basic Biographical Details
|Name: ||James Cousland |
|Designation: ||Architect |
|Born: ||c. 1833 |
|Died: ||12 June 1866 |
|Bio Notes: ||James Cousland was born c.1833, the son of Alexander Cousland and his wife Elizabeth Stark. The Couslands were prosperous wire-workers with a manufactory in Mitchell Street, Glasgow. Cousland was articled to Charles Wilson, where he met James Boucher, an assistant some seven years his senior, with whom he formed a partnership in c.1853. In 1857 they built for themselves a pair of semi-detached houses, Swiss Cottage at 35-37 St Andrews Drive, Pollokshields, and within a few years Boucher had built the similarly styled Swiss Villa at Coulport, Loch Long as a weekend house. |
The Boucher & Cousland practice was successful at once, designing the ambitious Gothic Renfield Free Church on Bath Street, a large block of warehouses and shops for Black at the corner of Gordon Street and Renfield Street in 1857-58, and a considerable number of very ambitious villas exhibited at the Royal Scottish Academy in 1860 and the Glasgow Institute in 1861. Within a year or two Walter Macfarlane of Saracen Iron Works became a client and in addition to the Macfarlane warehouse in Washington Street (1862) and the Saracen Ironworks at Possilpark (begun 1869), the practice made many designs for architectural castings.
The Couslands had some sort of business connection with John Kibble whose father had a wire and metal warehouse at Turner's Court in Argyle Street. In the early 1860s Kibble built the large Italian Romanesque villa Coulport House adjacent to Boucher's Swiss Villa at Loch Long for which they designed the conservatory which in enlarged form became the Kibble Palace in the Botanic Gardens at Kelvinside: Cousland is said to have made a model in wire, to show Kibble what it would look like. In 1862-64 the partnership reached its zenith with the towered Romanesque Free Church at Kinning Park and their cruciform Renaissance Free St George's Church, but Cousland's career was to be brief: his health was upset by a fatal accident at the building of Free St George's and he died at Swiss Cottage on 12 June 1866 after several months of paralysis, survived by his wife Jessie Knox Anderson.
Boucher was thereafter sole practitioner until 1875 when he took into partnership his pupil Henry Higgins (born 1848) who had been his assistant for two years, the style of the firm now becoming Boucher & Higgins.
NB Cousland must have had some connection with Paisley as his will was registered there.
Private and Business Addresses
|The following private or business addresses are associated with this architect:|
| ||Address||Type||Date from||Date to||Notes|
|Swiss Cottage/35-37, St Andrews Drive, Pollokshields, Glasgow, Scotland||Private||c. 1857||1866||Died there.|
Employment and Training
|The following individuals or organisations employed or trained this architect (click on an item to view details):|
| ||Name||Date from||Date to||Position||Notes|
|Charles Wilson||c. 1848||1854 or 1855||Apprentice|| |
|Boucher & Cousland||c. 1853||1866||Partner|| |
Buildings and Designs
|The following books contain references to this architect:|
|Johnston, W T||2003||Artists of Scotland|| ||Officina Publications CDROM|| |
|Scotlands People Website|| ||Wills & Testaments|| || ||Paisley Sheriff Court SC58/42/33|
|The following archives hold material relating to this architect:|
| ||Source||Archive Name||Source Catalogue No.||Notes|
|Professor David M Walker personal archive||Professor David M Walker, notes and collection of archive material|| ||Personal information from the Cousland family to A G Lochhead; further information from Iain Paterson.|