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Identity Statement

Reference code(s): GB 0402 LMS
Held at: Royal Geographical Society
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Date(s): [1691-1994]
Level of description: Collection level
Extent: 541 sub-fonds
Name of creator(s): Various


Administrative/Biographical history:

The Royal Geographical Society (RGS) was founded in 1830 as the Royal Geographical Society of London. Its aim was the advancement of Geographical Science. The Society was granted a Royal Charter by Queen Victoria in 1859. In 1995 the RGS merged with the Institute of British Geographers (IBG) to create the Royal Geographical Society (with the Institute of British Geographers).


Scope and content/abstract:

Library Manuscripts comprise manuscript items donated to the Royal Geographical Society. They are chiefly single files or a small number of items which are not large enough to warrant forming a special collection. The papers include, astronomical and meteorological observations, diaries, correspondence, notes, conference papers, reports, articles, photographs, sketches and maps covering all aspects of geography and exploration across the globe and date from 1691 to 1994. Highlights include:

Memorandum on a map of South America, by John Arrowsmith.
Papers of Maj R A Bagnold, 1929-1933, comprising positions, routes and heights in Egypt and letters from Bagnold.
Letters from Sir John Barrow to Lord Melville, 1935-1945 and letters to Barrow from Murzuq, 1822 and J D Dundas, 1818.
Papers of Dr Heinrich Barth, 1846-1952, letters and copy of a sketch map of Timbuktu.
Notes on heights of mountains in America by Capt F W Beechey, 1826.
Letters from the King of Siam to Sir John Bowring, 1855.
Letters relating to the British Arctic Air Route Expedition, 1928-1932.
Correspondence and reports of the British Ornithologists' Union Expedition to New Guinea, 1908-1911.
Papers of G Wyman Bury, 1913-1918.
Papers of Capt R F M Crozier, 1836-1906.
Account of a journey to Lhasa and central Tibet by Sarat Chandra Das, 1902.
Papers of Lt James Barker Emery, chiefly relating to Mombassa, 1822-1835.
Plan and elevation of the Screw Yacht FRAM as reconstructed in 1898.
'Narrative of a small party of HMS LEVEN under command of Lt C W Browns sent to explore the Zambesi by one of the survivors, a native of Angola', by Antonio Jozi, 1823.
Journal of Joseph Kaye's voyage from London to Genoa.
Papers and maps relating to William Kennish's exploration in South America for a canal route.
Papers relating to the Kufara expedition led by H W C J Penderel and P A Clayton to Gilf Kebir, 1933.
Papers relating to the Livingstone Award, 1875-1970.
H B Molesworth's diary of a journey to Mokalla (Mukalla), 1893.
Letters from Sir John Morrison to Henry Dundas and others concerning Persia and trade with Persia, 1783-1792.
Narrative of a shipwreck on the southern shores of Arabia by B A R Nicholson, 1836. Correspondence of Walter Oudney, 1821-1823.
Papers of Adm Sir W E Parry, relating to the Arctic, 1819-1823.
Papers relating to the Pitcairn Islands, 1831-1885.
Annotated 'Code of Naval Signals' belonging to Adm Sir Home Popham, 1799.
Letter from Sultan Husain Sufrari, 1708.
Account of explorations on the coast of Patagonia by B Villarino, 1782.
Travel journals of J Washington, chiefly in South America, 1822-1829.
Letters to A F R Wollaston, 1896-1926.

Access & Use

Language/scripts of material:
Mostly English; includes other languages and scripts.

System of arrangement:

Alphabetically by corporate or personal name.

Conditions governing access:

Accessed via the Foyle Reading Room. Free of charge for Fellows, Members and those with valid academic identification. All other users pay a charge and must bring identification in order to register on arrival.

Conditions governing reproduction:

Photocopying at Archivist's discretion, and subject to completion of 'application for copies' form.

Finding aids:

A full list of the collection is available online on A2A as the 'RGS Library Manuscript Collection' (ref: LMS).

Archival Information

Archival history:

Immediate source of acquisition:

Directly from donors. In most cases materials were donated by individuals connected to the papers or their heirs.

Allied Materials

Related material:

National Register of Archives: Click here to view NRA record

Publication note:

Description Notes

Archivist's note:
Prepared by Andrew Tatham, Keeper; revised by Sarah Drewery.

Rules or conventions:
ISAD(G) ed.2

Date(s) of descriptions:
9 May 2001; Nov 2008.

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