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Rolleston family

Identity Statement

Reference code(s): GB 0120 MSS.4245-4247, 6119-6127, 7494 and 8184
Held at: Wellcome Library
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Full title: Rolleston family
Date(s): 1805-1947
Level of description: Collection
Extent: 287 items
Name of creator(s): Rolleston | George | 1829-1881 | Professor of Anatomy and Physiology
Rolleston | John Davy | 1873-1946 | physician
Rolleston | Sir | Humphrey Davy | 1862-1944 | Knight | physician
Detailed catalogue: Click here to view repository detailed catalogue


Administrative/Biographical history:

Individuals documented here include: George Rolleston (1829-1881), Professor of Anatomy and Physiology at Oxford University, and his wife Grace; His eldest son Sir Humphrey Davy Rolleston KCB (1862-1944), who was President of the Röntgen Society 1922-1923, a younger son was John Davy Rolleston (1873-1946). F.R.S.; His younger son John Davy Rolleston (1873-1946) Physician, who obtained his M.D. at Oxford in 1904. He was appointed Medical Superintendent of the Metropolitan Asylums Board in 1926 and was elected F.R.C.P. in 1931.


Scope and content/abstract:

Personal and professional correspondence, photographs and papers of George Rolleston and his son Sir Humphry Rolleston, 1805-1947. There are also miscellaneous Rolleston family papers, as well as 2 papers given by John Davy Rolleston. George Rolleston's main areas of research were in comparative anatomy, zoology, archaeology, anthropology - his correspondence was often with contempories who were prominent in the same or related fields (botanists, biologists, natural historians). Humphry Rolleston was a keen photographer, and his albums contain a total of 323 photographs. These include portraits of relatives and friends, as well as contemporaries who were subsequently prominent in medicine and surgery. There are also general photographs taken during his career in medicine which are of interest for medical historians. His correspondence and papers cover both professional and personal matters.

Access & Use

Language/scripts of material:
English, partly German and French

System of arrangement:

As set out above in Scope and Content.

Conditions governing access:

Open. The papers are available subject to the usual conditions of access to Archives and Manuscripts material, after the completion of a Reader's Undertaking.

Conditions governing reproduction:

Photocopies/photographs/microfilm are supplied for private research only at the Archivist's discretion. Please note that material may be unsuitable for copying on conservation grounds, and that photographs cannot be photocopied in any circumstances. Readers are restricted to 100 photocopies in twelve months. Researchers who wish to publish material must seek copyright permission from the copyright owner.

Finding aids:

Catalogue available on Wellcome Library website.

Archival Information

Archival history:

Immediate source of acquisition:

MS.4245 purchased 1951 (acc.95836); MSS.4246-4547 and 8184 presented by Mrs J.D. Rolleston, July 1950 (acc.95712); MSS.6119-6127 presented by Mrs C. Byam Shaw, 1983 (acc.341434-341435); MS.7494 acquired from various sources: Purchased from: Sotheby's, London, July 1931; Glendining, London, August 1932, August 1934 and January 1935; probably a Mr. Wilson, May 1976; Bloomsbury Book Auctions, London, October 1992; F.E. Whitehart, June 1993. No.13 presented by H.J. Fuller, April 1929. Provenance details of no.7 not recorded; nos.10-11 transferred from Wellcome Historical Medical Museum, c 1939, source unknown; no details of provenance known for no.14; nos.15 and 16 transferred from the Wellcome Institute Library, Modern Medicine collection (found inside a copy of the International Manual of Causes of Death), May 1996 (accs. 67540, 67695, 67833, 67974, 325619, 349050, 349199, 49838).

Allied Materials

Related material:

Publication note:

Description Notes

Archivist's note:
Entry compiled by Barbara Ball from the Wellcome Library online catalogue.

Rules or conventions:
Compiled in compliance with General International Standard Archival Description, ISAD(G), second edition, 2000; National Council on Archives Rules for the Construction of Personal, Place and Corporate Names, 1997.

Date(s) of descriptions:
November 2008

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