THE late Chairman of the Athenaeum Board of Governors, to whom the recent establishment of that institution upon a permanent basis is so largely due, was born in Glasgow on Christmas Eve, 1835. His father was George Lapraik, wright and builder in the city, who died in 1844, and his great-grandfather that John Lapraik who exchanged poetic correspondence with Robert Burns, and was so highly esteemed by his famous contemporary. Dr. Lapraik was educated at Hutchesons' School, Anderson's College, and Glasgow University, where he graduated M.D. in 1859. He became a Fellow of the Faculty of Physicians and Surgeons of Glasgow in 1873, and for several years was a Councillor of that body. He represented the Faculty for several years on the Boards of the Western Infirmary, Anderson's College Medical School, Lenzie Convalescent Home, and the Lock Hospital. He is also one of the Managers of Gartnavel Lunatic Asylum and of Glasgow Maternity Hospital, and for over forty years has been Physician to the Royal Glasgow Asylum for the Blind.
Apart from the professional side of his life, Dr. Lapraik is a member of the "Auld Kirk," and is now senior elder of Glasgow Cathedral. He was appointed by the General Church Sessions as a representative to the City Parochial Board. There he was Convener of the Medical Committee for some years, and effected a vital reform by securing the appointment of trained nurses for the patients in the hospital wards of the poorhouse. Previously the nursing was done by pauper inmates of the house, ignorant, untrained, and many of them so dishonest and fond of drink that they frequently appropriated the medicines ordered for the patients if they were of a stimulating character. He retired from the Board when in 1898 it was united with that of the Barony Parish to form the Glasgow Parish Council.
But it is in connection with Glasgow Athenaeum that Dr. Lapraik's public services are perhaps best known. By request he joined the Board of Governors of the institution in the sixties, when its fortunes were at their blackest, and it is largely owing to his courage and unwearying services that the Athenaeum stands in its present position. For long he was Convener of the most important committee, that of Education, and he took a heavy share in the work of transferring the institution from its old site in Ingrain Street to its present situation. Latterly, for five years he was Chairman of the Board of Governors, and during that period took the leading part in carrying through the reconstruction scheme and new constitution which have secured the permanency of the Athenaeum as an educational institution for the citizens of Glasgow. On his retiral in 1903 he was presented, in the name of the Governors and a few friends, with his portrait, painted by Mr. R. C. Crawford, a replica being hung in the Athenaeum Reading-room.
It is worthy of note that though Dr. Lapraik has sat on the boards of so many Glasgow institutions he never was a candidate for, or solicited any of, these honours. In every case he was elected spontaneously, and the fact that he was re-elected on every board as long as he cared to serve is sufficient evidence that he satisfactorily performed his duties.

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