Anderson Rodger son of James Rodger was born in Port Glasgow and is first noted on the 1851 census living with his family in King Street. By 1861 he was working as a ships joiner and by 1871 he was living in 2 Clarks Close, Port Glasgow and his occupation was listed as Fish Merchant.
In November 1895 he was elected as Provost of the Burgh of Port Glasgow. During his term as provost a noteworthy event took place being The Diamond Jubilee of Queen Victoria, and Mr Rodger was one of the Scottish Provosts who attended a Commemorative Service in Westminster Abbey. Money was raised by public subscription for the purpose of purchasing a badge and chain of Office for the Provost. This was presented to Mr Rodger by his predecessor ex Provost Gray on 19th June 1897. The badge bore the inscription "Presented by a number of Port-Glasgow gentlemen to the Port Glasgow Town Council for the use of the provost in commemoration of Her Majesty's Diamond Jubilee 19th June 1897"
Mr Rodger took a great interest in the welfare of Port Glasgow. In particular in local Benevolent Institutions. Himself being a sufferer of eye trouble and due to his generosity the people of the district were indebted for the building and equipping of the Eye Infirmary. The eye infirmary opened on 4th August 1894 and to mark the occasion Mr Rodger was presented with a silver scroll which had the incsription -
He died in September 1909 his firm continued under the management of his son Anderson Rodger Jnr.
'From the working Men of Greenock and Port Glasgow to Mr.Anderson Rodger, Shipbuilder on the occasion of the opening of the Eye Infirmary presented by him to Greenock, 4th August, 1894'.
He also donated £1000 for the endowment of a bed in the old Greenock Infirmary.
This scroll came up for sale in 2006 and some of the pictures included in the catalogues of sale are shown below.
A presentation silver Scroll Holder and related paper work
By R&W.Sorley, Glasgow 1894, Of cylindrical form with reeded bands, with pull-off cover to one end engraved with 'Burgh of Greenock' surmounting an engraved depiction of men rolling barrles before ships on the sea, the other end engraved 'Burgh of Port Of Glasgow' above the arms of a ship, relating to the presentation of a new Eye Infirmary to the community, 33cm long, 18.6oz.
The British Medical Jornal August.18th 1894.
HOSPITAL AND DISPENSARY MANAGEMENT.
OPENING OF A NEW EYE INFIRMARY AT GREENOCK.
A COTTAGE hospital for the treatment of diseases and injuries of the eye has been opened at Greenock. A special department for ophthalmic work was opened in Greenock Infirmary some fourteen years ago, and an oculist- Dr. N. G. Cluckie - appointed, under the terms of a bequest of £6,000, the Ferguson Eye Bequest. The interest of that bequest was only sufflcient to pay the expenses of the department.
But the need of such a department in the years that have since elapsed, during which some 35,000 patients have been treated, has been so abundantly shown that it became clear that either an addition to the infirmary or a special building for eye cases was needful, and Mr. Anderson Rodger, a Clyde ship builder, has generously taken upon himself the whole cost of the latter.
The hospital is built of patent terra-cotta glazed brick, with a red tiled roof. A waiting-room, capable of accommodating 100 persons, leads to the dispensary for out-door cases. On the main floor there are two wards, one for males and one for females, each with six beds, with separate
dining and sitting rooms adjoining, and also with separate bathroom and lavatory accommodation. On this floor there are also the ophthalmoscopic room and business rooms. Upstairs are two private wards and sittingroom. Full accommodation is also provided for matron and servants. Apartfrom the main building are awashhouse and laundry. The total cost of the building has been 2,000. The opening of the hospital was made the occasion of a public demonstration, in which the people testified to their appreciation not only of the value of the institution but of the generosity of the donor.
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