It was designed in 1862 by the Edinburgh architects John Dick Peddie and Charles Kinnear, opening in 1866 as the Morgan Hospital, a charitable institution providing accommodation and education for "sons of tradesmen and persons of the working class generally whose parents stand in the need of assistance". Two years later, in 1868 the school became The Morgan Academy, often referred to by alumni as simply "The Morgan". The building is similar in design to Fettes College in Edinburgh. The architecture is designated as a Category 'A' listing by Historic Scotland.
Its benefactor was John Morgan, the son of a Dundee maltman, who emigrated to India at the age of 20 where, with his brother, he became a wealthy indigo farmer. Upon his death in 1850 he bequeathed much of his fortune to establish a residential institution. The hospital closed in 1888 and was bought by the members of the Dundee Burgh School Board, who re-opened it as a school.
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