Everyone can access UCL Special Collections digitally or in person. Our collections of rare, unique and historic archives & books cover themes including history of UCL, education, arts and sciences.
- You can search for rare books and other printed material on Explore.
- Archives and manuscripts are found on the Archives Catalogue.
- Search for digitised and digital content on Digital Collections.
For more information and video tutorials on how to use these resources to find material held by UCL Special Collections, learn about Our Collections.
News from our blog
We are delighted to announce the winners of this year’s Anthony Davis Book Collecting Prize, which is open to students from any London universities. The prize is intended to encourage students who collect books, printed and manuscript materials. We received over thirty submissions from a total of nine institutions, with collections ranging from manuals on insect collecting, Penguin editions and books on the Tudors to 1890’s London and theatre programmes.
Over the course of Spring 2023 we worked with our UCL Library Services’ colleague Abida S. to take a closer look at MS Mocatta 20: Fragments from the Holy Quran.
The last year has seen Special Collections’ Outreach programme go from strength to strength. We have welcomed school and community groups to a wide range of activities, especially at our new campus at UCL East, and exciting plans are afoot for next academic year. That said, it is always beneficial to look back at triumphs and celebrate them when you can. The upcoming anniversary of George Orwell’s birthday (120 years!) is a great opportunity for us to celebrate something that took place last summer at UCL’s Bloomsbury campus with a very special delivery partner, The Orwell Youth Prize.
The following was adapted from text written by Erika Delbecque and Tabitha Tuckett for the 2023 exhibition catalogue Hidden in Plain Sight: Liberating our Library Collections. The Main Library exhibition Hidden in Plain Sight is open until December 2023 and is open to the public. For more information, visit UCL Library’s Exhibition page.
At UCL Special Collections, we look after collections that, as a whole, tell a larger story about our shared history and culture.
Colin Penman, Head of UCL Records, writes about a newly uncovered item in the UCL Records collection.
In the timely way that these things can happen, I recently came across an official souvenir programme for the coronation of King George VI and Queen Elizabeth in May 1937:
This post was written by Caroline Kimbell, Joint Head Of Commercial Digitisation And Licensing at UCL Library Services
Following the digitisation of UCL’s 18th century treasures (currently in production) we turn next to a new module for ProQuest’s Early European Books, comprising 515 works of Judaica, roughly half in Hebrew, half in other European languages.
UCL Press’s Paper Trails: The Social Life of Archives and Collections and the University of Stirling’s Oral History of the Pandemic Project are pleased to invite contributions on the broad theme of Creative Responses to the History of Covid-19. Since 2021, researchers at Stirling have been interviewing the University’s staff and students about their experiences of the Covid-19 pandemic