Sir John Stirling Maxwell
Sir John Stirling Maxwell (1866-1956) was the eldest son of Sir William Stirling Maxwell (1818-78). Sir William Stirling Maxwell died in 1878, leaving his two sons aged 12 and 10 to be brought up by an aunt. The younger son went on to inherit Sir William's estate at Kier, near Dunblane, while the elder John inherited the baronetcy (becoming the 10th Baronet) and Pollok House when he reached the age of 21 in 1887.
Chairman of the Royal Fine Art Commission for Scotland, and a Trustee of the National Galleries of Scotland Sir John Stirling Maxwell inherited his father's philanthropic nature and taste in terms of art. He became an authority on architecture and the importance of the environment, as well as a noted art collector.
His love of nature was obvious when he opened the Pollok Estate to the public in 1911. He also gifted the land which was to become Maxwell Park on which our beautiful building now stands. Sir John was also one of the founding members of The National Trust and one of it’s first Vice-Presidents and Presidents.
In 1901 he married Ann Christian Maxwell, the couple had one daughter, Dame Anne Maxwell Macdonald (11th Baronet).
In 1944 Sir William Burrell gifted a large collection of art treasures to the City of Glasgow along with a donation of £250,000 to build a suitable building to display it. Sir John Stirling Maxwell was very involved in trying to find a suitable venue to display Burrell’s collection. Following his death in 1956 his daughter Anne gave Pollok House, the art collection, the library, and 361 acres of surrounding land, to the City of Glasgow. This gift of land eventually allowed the Glasgow city council to custom-build a museum to display the Burrell Collection.