The name of DC Thomson & Co. Ltd. is synonymous with journalism and printing in Dundee. They remain the UK’s largest independent publisher. In the 1860s, William Thomson a ship owner invested in a local printing and publishing company called Charles Alexander & Co. This company published the Dundee Courier and the Weekly News. In 1884, William formed a partnership with his sons William III and David Couper, and became W & DC Thomson. In the mid-1880s there were 20 printing and publishing businesses listed in the Dundee Directories. Thomson’s biggest competitors were John Leng & Co. Ltd. The two printing powerhouses of Thomson and Leng came together when Leng’s daughter married William Thomson’s son in June 1886. The companies officially amalgamated in 1905 under the name DC Thomson & Co. Ltd. Over the past 130 years DC Thomson & Co. have produced and published 12 newspaper titles and over 200 magazine and comic titles. It wasn’t until after the First World War that DC Thomson ventured into the world of comic production with the release of Adventure in 1921. But it was the release of The Dandy in 1937 and Beano in 1938 that cemented DC Thomson’s name in the history of comic production. Look at object number 1 which is a Beano comic dated 1943. DC Thomson’s comics were different from anything that had been produced before. Strong on slapstick, with children as the main characters, DC Thomson pushed the boundaries of what was acceptable for a comic at the time. Beano remains the longest weekly running comic in the world. Look left, alongside this case, to find out more about industry in Dundee.
The McManus: Dundee’s Art Gallery and Museum is situated in the centre of Dundee. The Museum and Art Gallery originally known as the Albert Institute was opened in 1867 as a memorial to Prince Albert. In 2005 The McManus closed for a major refurbishment, reopening again on the 28th February 2010. We celebrated our 150th Anniversay in 2017 with a year of celebration. In 2020 we were awarded Visitor Attraction of the Year by Visit Scotland. The McManus has 8 galleries, which are laid out on 2 floors. Visitors can embark on a journey through 400 million years, and witness how a small settlement developed into the City of Dundee as it is today. From exhibits relating to the life of early man in the area, stunning paintings and decorative art through to artefacts from industries past and present, the City's collections, many of which are recognised as being of national significance, give an insight into Dundee and its people.