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Archives in London and the M25 area

Records of Hospital Donors and Patrons

Identity Statement

Reference code(s): GOS/6
Held at: Great Ormond Street Hospital Archives
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Full title: Records of Hospital Donors and Patrons
Date(s): 1852-2010
Level of description: Sub fonds
Extent: 39 metres
Name of creator(s): Great Ormond Street Hospital


Administrative/Biographical history:

Great Ormond Street Hospital was founded in 1852 by Charles West on its current site in Bloomsbury as the Hospital for Sick Children. It was the first children's hospital in Britain. It became part of the NHS in 1948 and took over the Queen Elizabeth Hospital for Sick Children in 1968. It went through several changes of name during this period and adopted its current name in 1994.


Scope and content/abstract:

Records of donors for Great Ormond Street Hospital, comprising: GOS/6/1 Lists and Registers, comprising GOS/6/1/1,Register of Life Governors, 1852-1890; GOS/6/1/2, Register of Life Donors, 1898-1908, with the Hospital's supporters since 1852; GOS/6/1/3-5, General Register of Donations and Subscriptions, January 1891-1900; GOS/6/1/6-7, Register of Life Governors, 1889-1908, with details of their date of joining since 1852, and Register of their Letters of Recommendation for patient admissions; GOS/6/1/8, Register of Donors under 30 Guineas, 1890-1897, with details of their donations since 1852, and Register of their Letters of Recommendation for patient admissions.

GOS/6/1/9, Register of Legacies, 1855-1893, including GOS/6/1/10-11, Registers of Wills and Bequests, 1884-1908; GOS/6/1/12, Register of Legacy Notices, 1903-06; GOS/6/1/13, Annual Register of Subscriptions, 1938; GOS/6/1/14, Financial Secretary's Report Book on Donations, 1923-1925; GOS/6/1/15-38 Correspondence concerning legacies to the Hospital, 1910-1948; GOS/6/1 /39, Legacies correspondence, loose copy Wills and related Probate information, 1909.

GOS/6/1/40-41 Sampled correspondence concerning personal and organisational donations to the Hospital, 1951-1959 and 1965-1969; GOS/6/1 /42-43, Deeds of Covenant, 1936-1953; GOS/6/1 /44, Register of Wills, 1934; GOS/6/1 /45-46, Register of Gifts, 1914-1941; GOS/6/1/48, Register of Ladies Applied to for Patronage, 1910; GOS/6/1/49 Register of Donors for Borough of Holborn Rebuilding Fund, 1933-1934; GOS/6/1/50, Appeal Book for Restoration of Hospital after Wartime bombing, 1945, autographed by members of the Royal Family, the British and United States' Governments, and leading Hollywood actors, actresses and producers; GOS/6/1/51, General Register of Donations, 1965-1971; GOS/6/1/52, Register of Donations to the Samaritan Fund, 1915-1917; GOS/6/1/53-54, Register of Legacies and their Subsequent Administration 1884-1948.

GOS/6/2-4, Major Patrons and Benefactors, comprising GOS/6/2/1-5, Gifts from the Royal family, correspondence regarding opening ceremonies, visits etc, 1872-1977.

GOS/6/3, The W. H. Barry Bequest (gift by William Henry Barry of the Hospital Chapel, and its Endowment for Services in Perpetuity), comprising GOS/6/3/1-6, Service Registers and Bequest agreements with Clergy, 1891-1963; GOS/6/3/7, Correspondence concerning the administration of the Barry Bequest, 1926-1960, including the arrangements for the appointment and transfer of Clergy, discussions on the use of the Chapel for Nonconformist services, the financial administration of the Bequest, a copy of W. H. Barry's Will (1892), and a pedigree of Barry family.

GOS/6/3/11-17, Chapel Baptism Registers, 1866-1988 *; GOS/6/3/18-19, Chapel Prayer Books, 1875; GOS/6/3/20, Order of Service for Hospital Chapel, 1875; GOS/6/3/21Certificate notifying his family of the Baptism of a named patient, 1917, GOS/6/3/22, Certificate of Christian baptism, 2002.

Sir J M Barrie and Peter Pan Copyright Gift GOS/6/4/1-2, Correspondence concerning gift of Copyright of Peter Pan to the Hospital by Sir James Barrie, with subsequent letters and press-cuttings, 1930-1977; GOS/6/4/3, Manuscript text of Barrie's speech to Guildhall Dinner on behalf of the Hospital, with annotated typescript copy, 1930; GOS/6/4/4-6 Correspondence from Sir J. M. Barrie 1929-1932; GOS/6/4/7-8 Membership and Subscriptions Register for the Peter Pan League, and correspondence, 1937-1949.

GOS/6/4/9-189, Correspondence concerning the administration of the Peter Pan Copyright gift, including correspondence with publishers, film companies, theatres, television companies, producers of overseas and foreign-language editions, 1929-1981;( /65 includes 2 letters of J M Barrie, correspondence with Barrie's Secretary, Cynthia Asquith, and reminiscences of the circumstances of Barrie's copyright gift by Hodder's Chairman, 1930-1972, /137 includes details of litigation with the Disney Corporation, 1962-1965; GOS/6/4/190, Correspondence between Lord Callaghan of Cardiff and Sir Cyril Chantler on the circumstances of the 1988 Peter Pan copyright extension to the Hospital, and the assistance given by Lady Callaghan; GOS/6/4/191, Set of Peter Pan commemorative stamps issued by the Royal Mail for the Hospital's 150th Anniversary year, 2002; GOS/6/4/192 Agreement with Samuel French Ltd regarding the licensing rights for amateur stage performances of Peter Pan, 20 October 1977; GOS/6/4/193 Hospital Charity's 'Activity List' of Peter Pan Centenary activities, 2004.

GOS/6/5 Commemorative and Endowed Cot Bequests, including GOS/6/5/1-5, Registers of Special Cots, 1868-1932; GOS/6/5/6 Register of Named Cots and Donors, circa 1930(updated, with amendments to 1968); GOS/6/5/7 Indexed volume listing Named and Endowed Cots, circa 1945; GOS/6/5/8, Register of Commemorative Plates at the Hospital, with information on the circumstances of the commemoration, circa 1955.

GOS/6/5/9-133 Correspondence files on the naming and sponsoring of individual commemorative cots, c 1920-1970, also including general files on the naming and listing of cots, 1936-1969, and files on the design and use of commemorative cot-plates, 1936-1956.

Miscellaneous Fundraising, GOS6/6/1- , including Fundraising dinners 1887-1890; GOS/6/6/7-9 The Imperial Coronation Bazaar, 1902; GOS/6/6/10, Correspondence and Reports concerning fund-raising for the Hospital by the Metropolitan Hospitals Sunday Fund, 1903-1906; GOS/6/6/11, File concerning advertising for special appeal on behalf of war-injured children from Europe, 1914; GOS/6/6/13, Correspondence concerning Appeal for the Children's Hospital City (a proposed new country Hospital under Great Ormond Street auspices), 1921; GOS/6/6/14/1-6, Correspondence concerning the commemorative naming of Wards, 1924-2000; GOS/6/6/15, Correspondence with overseas Donors, 1924-1969; GOS/6/6/16, Correspondence concerning Garden Party at Marlborough House in aid of the Hospital, 1931; GOS/6/6/17, Typescript texts of short stories submitted by Authors without fee for Appeal Fund; GOS/6/6/18, Correspondence concerning the Hospital's Ladies Association, 1937-1938.

GOS/6/6/19, Book of Gratitude, produced by the Hospital to record leading benefactors, 1940; GOS/6/6/21, General correspondence concerning Legacies to the Hospital, 1959-1964; GOS/6/6/23-26, Correspondence concerning the establishment and implementation of the Sir Denis Browne Memorial Fund (for Travelling Scholarships for clinical staff), 1967-1975, including Minutes of the Fund's Committee; GOS/6/6/29, Deed of Grant of Annuity of 120 between the Hospital and Reverend Joshua Wilson Coombs of Nice, in return for endowment of cot in memory of his daughter.

GOS/6/6/30*, Deeds of Covenant to the Hospital, with related correspondence 1934-1957; GOS/6/6/34, Papers relating to Sotheby's Auction of Hospital artworks at Hopetoun House, 1983, including portrait of Margaret Henley (the original inspiration for Wendy); GOS/6/6/3,5 GOSH Fundraising department's Corporate Pack, 1997; GOS/6/6/36, Survey of gifts of over 500 received by the Hospital since 1937, compiled prior to joining the National Health Service in 1948.

GOS/6/7, Wishing Well Appeal papers, 1985-1988 (catalogue in progress); GOS/6/8/1, Great Ormond Street Hospital Children's Charity fund-raising literature, 2002; GOS/6/8/2 Great Ormond Street Hospital Children's Charity Newsletter, 2003- date.

Access & Use

Language/scripts of material:

System of arrangement:

Eight series, arranged in 59 archive boxes and 34 bound volumes.

Conditions governing access:

Open, except for asterisked records under 70 years.

Conditions governing reproduction:

All open amaterial can be photocopied and photographed at the discretion of the archivist.

Finding aids:

Typescript catalogue and a copy of the catalogue available for consultation in the Archives. The Wishing Well Appeal material is not yet catalogued.

Archival Information

Archival history:

Immediate source of acquisition:

Great Ormond Street Hospital

Allied Materials

Related material:

See also GOS/8, Correspondence Files and Papers.

Register of baptisms, 1870-1897, included in Historic Hospitals' admissions Register Project, (

Publication note:

Details of the Wishing Well Appeal are contained in Marion Allford, Charity Appeals: the Complete Guide of Success (J.M. Dent, London 1993).

For the involvement of royalty in the hospital's fundraising, see Frank Prochaska, Royal Bounty; the Making of a Welfare Monarchy (Yale University Press, New Havenand London, 1995).

Description Notes

Archivist's note:
Compiled by Andrea Tanner

Rules or conventions:

Date(s) of descriptions:
December 2010

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