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L S Penrose Papers

Identity Statement

Reference code(s): GB 0103 PENROSE
Held at: University College London
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Full title: L S Penrose Papers
Date(s): 1806-1974
Level of description: Collection (fonds)
Extent: 96 boxes
Name of creator(s): Penrose | Lionel Sharples | 1898-1972 | geneticist
Detailed catalogue: Click here to view repository detailed catalogue


Administrative/Biographical history:

Born in London, 11 June 1898; educated at the Downs School, Colwall and Leighton Park School, Reading; member of the Society of Friends; joined Friends' Ambulance Unit, 1917; served in France, 1918; read mathematics at St John's College, Cambridge, 1919; awarded degree of Moral Sciences Tripos, 1921; medical course at St Thomas's Hospital, London, 1928; MD, 1930; Research Director at the Royal Eastern Counties' Institution, Colchester, 1930; published the 'Colchester Survey', a detailed account of mentally defective patients and their families, 1938; Director of Psychiatric Research, Ontario, Canada, 1939-1945; returned to England, 1945; appointed to Francis Galton Chair of Eugenics (later renamed the Galton Chair of Human Genetics), University College London, 1945-1965; also appointed Consultant Geneticist, University College Hospital; edited Annals of Human Genetics, 1945-1965; Fellow of the Royal Society, 1953; Fellow of the Royal College of Physicians, 1962; set up the Kennedy-Galton Centre for Mental Deficiency Research and Diagnosis at Harperbury Hospital, near St Albans, on his retirement; Fellow of the Royal College of Psychiatrists, 1971; died, 12 May 1972. Publications: Mental defect (Sidgwick & Jackson, London, 1933); The influence of heredity on disease (H K Lewis & Co, London, 1934); A clinical and genetic study of 1280 cases of mental defect (HMSO, London, 1938); The biology of mental defect (Sidgwick & Jackson, London, 1949); On the objective study of crowd behaviour (H K Lewis & Co, London, 1952); Heredity and environment in human affairs (National Children's Home, London, 1955); Outline of human genetics (Heinemann, London, 1959); editor of Recent advances in human genetics with Helen Lang Brown (J & A Churchill, London, 1961); Mathematical tables for research workers in human genetics with S Maynard-Smith and C A B Smith (J & A Churchill, London, 1961); Down's anomaly with G F Smith (J & A Churchill, London, 1966); various scientific articles.


Scope and content/abstract:

Papers of Lionel Sharples Penrose, 1806-1974, comprising personal papers relating to Penrose and his family, 1806-1974; papers relating to the professional training, medical, scientific and voluntary work of Penrose, 1918-1972; letters, mainly to Penrose, 1915-1973.

Access & Use

Language/scripts of material:
English German French Swedish Danish Japanese Italian Dutch Flemish Spanish Latin Nigerian

System of arrangement:

Arranged in three sections as indicated in scope and content. Letters relating to a particular subject remain with the working papers connected with them.

Conditions governing access:

Certain restrictions apply. Some items in this collection are not available for general access due to data protection and confidentiality restrictions. Specific restrictions are explained in the description for each item.

Conditions governing reproduction:

Copies of items in this collection may be supplied for the purposes of private research only. Please note that material may be unsuitable for copying on conservation grounds, and that photographs cannot be photocopied in any circumstances. Researchers who wish to publish material must seek copyright permission from the copyright owner. Items that are closed for data protection and confidentiality reasons cannot be copied until the closure period has ended.

Finding aids:

Online catalogue available. A list of the papers and correspondence of Lionel Sharples Penrose (1898-1972) held in the Manuscripts Room, University College London Library compiled by M Merrington, B Blundell, J Golden, J Hogarth (University College London, 1979); card index of the correspondence (now superseded)

Archival Information

Archival history:

Immediate source of acquisition:

Presented to University College London in 1975 by Mrs Margaret Newman, formerly Mrs L S Penrose.

Allied Materials

Related material:

National Register of Archives: Click here to view NRA record

Publication note:

Description Notes

Archivist's note:
Sources: British Library on-line public access catalogue 1997. Compiled by Annabel Dodds as part of the RSLP AIM25 project.

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:
Aug 2000; updated 2018

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