The Society's Library and Archives


The Society's library, for many years housed at Stationers' Hall in the City of London, moved in January 2007 to Senate House, Malet Street, WC1E 7HU, where it is now available alongside the resources of the University of London Research Library Services.

Procedures for consulting items in the Society's library have changed as a result of this move, the main change being that it is no longer possible to borrow books. It is not possible to house the collection in open-access shelving within Senate House – items will instead be fetched on request - but members of the Society will now also have free reference access to all the other resources of the Senate House Library, on production of proof of status (a signed copy of the latest annual Society programme card) at the Library membership desk. Another result of the move is that items in the Society's library are now available for consultation by any registered user of Senate House Library. The books will remain physically identifiable as belonging to the Society.

This development follows the incorporation of records for items in the Society's library into the main University of London Research Library Services catalogue (, which took place in 2004.

Full details of contacts and opening hours at Senate House Library can be found on the web at



The Society's archives cover every aspect of the Society's activities from its foundation in 1892 to 2008. Comprising the records of a private society without a permanent office and run by honorary officers, the coverage is patchy and at times haphazard and researchers will find
unexpected gaps and equally unexpected inclusions. For many years it was run from the British Museum (now British Library) the records being kept in the Keepers' offices. They include Council minutes, sub-committee reports and minutes, AGM minutes, membership lists, printed term cards, photographs, exhibition catalogues, and the records of Colophon, the Council's dining club. The correspondence of honorary secretaries, and of editors' of The Library bulks large, along with material concerned with the publication of certain monographs.

The archives are on deposit with the Bodleian Library and a finding list is on the Bodleian website:


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Pages updated: 10 December, 2012