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Archives in London and the M25 area


Identity Statement

Reference code(s): GB 0074 CLC/B/051
Held at: London Metropolitan Archives
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Date(s): 1702-1984
Level of description: Collection
Extent: 103 production units.
Name of creator(s): Coal Factors' Society


Administrative/Biographical history:

The Coal Factors' Society was established, probably in the first half of the 18th century, for persons engaged in the wholesale coal trade in London. In 1832 the society was re-founded, for "friendly intercourse and mutual protection" of members of the trade.


Scope and content/abstract:

Records of the Coal Factors' Society, beginning in 1761 and consisting of minutes, attendance books, letter books, rules and regulations, an account of market dues at the Coal Exchange, financial records including ledgers and cash books, factors' day and entry books, factors' and meters' postage books, an alphabetical list of ships giving gross and net tonnage, lists of named ships with total monthly cost to each factor, comparative lists of the highest prices of best house coals taken for each, contracts made with various persons for the supply of barges, beams, weights, a Tilbury signal code book, and newspaper cuttings. There are no records for the period 1790-1831.

The collection also includes a register of names, destinations and owners of ships, and weight of coal shipped from Newcastle, 1702-4, Ms 30689, which had been found amongst the archives of the Coal Factors' Society and Coal Meters' Committee. It predates both bodies and appears to have been collected as a curio.

Access & Use

Language/scripts of material:

System of arrangement:

Records arranged by MS number, assigned during cataloguing at the Guildhall Library Manuscripts Section.

Conditions governing access:

Available for general access.

Conditions governing reproduction:

Copyright to this collection rests with the City of London.

Finding aids:

Please see online catalogues at:

Archival Information

Archival history:

Immediate source of acquisition:

The records of this organisation, along with the records of the Coal Meters' Committee (1832-) were given to the Manuscripts Section of Guildhall Library in three stages: in 1959, 1975 and 1995. The Guildhall Library Manuscripts Section merged with the London Metropolitan Archives in 2009.

Allied Materials

Related material:

Publication note:

For further details see Raymond Smith, Sea-coal for London: a History of the Coal Factors in the London Market. (London, 1961).

Description Notes

Archivist's note:

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 2010 to January 2011.

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