Odds and quads

This image, Boat building at Anstruther, was taken in 1973 by George Allan Little (1919-98), a Dundee banker who in his forties decided to embark on a career as a photographer.

December 16, 2010

Although he took on commissions of many kinds, Mr Little enjoyed travelling around Scotland meeting unusual people and was fascinated by the traditional crafts and trades of the east coast.

For 20 years, he produced a series of illustrated articles based on interviews with his subjects, which offer a powerful picture of a lost slice of social history.

This is just one of the 560 photographs by Mr Little - among 750,000 photos in all - held by the St Andrews University Library. It also holds manuscripts dating back to the 12th century, the Royal Collection donated by James I in 1612 and a vast range of material from 1710 to 1834 when it served as a copyright deposit library.

An anthology, Treasures of St Andrews University Library, including this photograph, has been published as part of the university's 600th-anniversary celebrations. St Andrews was the third university to be founded in the English-speaking world.

Send suggestions for this series on the treasures, oddities and curiosities owned by universities across the world to: matthew.reisz @tsleducation.com.

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