Peter Jamieson

Peter Jamieson (1898-1976) was a writer, antiquary and socialist from Lerwick. He is best remembered today as the founder of the New Shetlander magazine in 1947. Although his role as editor came to an end less than ten years later, the magazine still comes out four times a year. The New Shetlander, as it has been since Jamieson’s first edition, is an essential platform for Shetland writers.

Jamieson was a dedicated researcher of Shetland’s history and culture. His papers include many letters he wrote seeking information for articles he was writing. There are several unpublished works in the collection – biographies of author George Stewart and P.&O. founder Arthur Anderson, for example – as well as hundreds of pages of notes on various Shetland-related subjects. There are also many papers concerning the history of socialism and the labour movement in Shetland.

In addition to his research on historical subjects, Jamieson was interested in both fiction and poetry. He was an able writer of Shetland-dialect lyrics and, in the early 1940s, helped by his friend Bertie Deyell, Jamieson gathered material for the first serious anthology of Shetland poetry. The anthology never appeared but the manuscript and associated material are now preserved in the collection, alongside a wealth of material of interest to anybody researching Shetland.