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British Pharmacological Society

Identity Statement

Reference code(s): GB 0120 SA/BPS
Held at: Wellcome Library
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Full title: British Pharmacological Society
Date(s): 1914-1988
Level of description: Collection (fonds)
Extent: 9 boxes, 1 photograph
Name of creator(s): British Pharmacological Society


Administrative/Biographical history:

In 1931 the British Pharmacological Society was founded in Oxford by group of c 20 pharmacologists, and brought together by J.A. Gunn, H.H. Dale and W.E. Dixon. It aimed to meet once a year for the reading of papers on pharmacological subjects and the discussion of questions of teaching and publication to promote friendly relations between workers in pharmacology.


Scope and content/abstract:

Papers of the British Pharmacological Society including minutes of General Meetings, 1931-1988, Committee Meetings, 1953-1988, and Clinical Section, 1970-1988; attendance books, 1948-1965. As frequently happens with societies which have no fixed address or paid secretariat, the archives of the British Pharmacological Society are not complete. There are, however, a complete set of minutes and full committee minutes from 1953, the date when committees appear to have started to keep minutes. There remain gaps in the handbooks (notably between 1931-1955, although it is not clear whether they were published during this period) and no separate meeting papers before 1955; copies of these may however come to light in due course. The increase in the size and work of the Society in the 1960s and 1970s is reflected in the amount of papers produced for committee and general meetings. The office of a meetings secretary as well as a general secretary was created in 1968, and inevitably additional correspondence and duplicate papers were produced.

Access & Use

Language/scripts of material:

System of arrangement:

The collection is divided into sections as follows:
A General Minutes
B Committee Minutes
C Clinical Section Minutes
D Attendance books
E Handbooks
F Correspondence
G Historical
H Photographs and tape recordings

Conditions governing access:

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:

Typescript catalogue available in the Wellcome Library, including appendices listing Officers of the Society (Appendix A) and selected meetings of the Society (Appendix B). The catalogue to this collection has not yet been fully converted to electronic form: for detail, and to order material, see hard-copy list available in the Wellcome Library. Copies of the catalogue are available on request.

Collection level description available on-line on the Wellcome Library website

Archival Information

Archival history:

Immediate source of acquisition:

The records of the British Pharmacological Society up to 1988 have been placed in the Wellcome Library on permanent loan by the Society. The first two accessions were in 1980 via Professor Sir William Paton and Professor G.P. Lewis, but additional material has been added on several other occasions, notably in 1983 when papers from Dr J.P. Quilliam's office were transferred. Accessions 23; 28; 31; 128; 179; 189; 219; 235; 277; 303; and 689.

Allied Materials

Related material:

Publication note:

Description Notes

Archivist's note:
Copied from the Wellcome Library catalogue by Sarah Drewery.

Rules or conventions:
In compliance with ISAD (G): General International Standard Archival Description - 2nd Edition (1999); UNESCO Thesaurus, December 2001; National Council on Archives Rules for the Construction of Personal, Place and Corporate Names, 1997.

Date(s) of descriptions:
Jan 2009

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