Alison Clark (2021 Jerimiah Dalziel Prize in British History.)

Thesis title: Expanding the Boundaries of Empire, 1790-1815: Scottish Traders in the Southeast Caribbean and the rise of Sandbach Tinne & Co.

PhD History

Year of study: 4

  • School of History, Classics and Archaeology

Contact details


Alison Clark is a PhD candidate at the University of Edinburgh. Alison Graduated in 1984 with a degree in Environmental Science from Liecester Polytechnic, and in 1994 with a MSc in Forest Management from the University of Aberdeen. As she worked in conservation and forestry in Highland Perthshire she developed an interest in the history of land use and ownership in the Scottish Highlands. In 1999 she retrained and worked as a teacher. Alison is currently undertaking doctoral research into  West Indian Merchants in the final decades of slavery, from the  French revolutionary wars and the Napoleonic wars to the end of the British slave trade in 1807 and eventual emancipation in the 1830's.  The focus of her study is the Anglo-Scottish firm which became known as Sandbach Tinne;  the early establishment of the firm in Guyana and the links and legacies, particularly in Scotland. Supervisor Prof. Nuala Zahedieh, Prof. Diana Paton and Dr. Alexander Murdoch.


Bsc Science and the Environment, Leicester Polytechnic

MSc Forest Management, University of Aberdeen

PGCE Primary Education, University of Sunderland

Responsibilities & affiliations

Scottish Centre for Diaspora Studies

Edinburgh Centre for Global History

Diaspora Studies Graduate Workshops

Research summary

Links between Scotland and the Caribbean during the period of slavery and indenture.

West Indies Merchants, and in particular cotton merchants, in the Glasgow and Clyde area.

Legacies in Scotland and Guyana from the period of slavery and indenture.

Knowledge exchange

April 2019 - Alison shared her research in a workshop hosted by the Edinburgh Centre for Global History: Slavery, Gender, Capitalism in the Early Modern World: a workshop with Jennifer Morgan (Howard University). She presented a paper entitled Sandbach Tinne & Co.: the infancy of a mulit-national company.

April 2020 - Alison shared her reserch in a workshop hosted by the Edinburgh Centre for Global History: Between History and Memory: slavery and race. A workshop with Professor Ana Lucia  Araujo (Duke University). She presented a paper entitled Establishing a regional merchant firm in the Scottish Atlantic world.

April 2020 - Alison has shared her research about James McInroy (1759-1825) and his links with Highland Perthshire, Gourock and Demerara in April 2021 at the Scottish Local History Forum's online mini-conference, 'Scotland's involvement in Slavery - the local view'.