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This guide highlights primary source material about the metropolis of London from the Archives and Manuscripts Collection.

It includes material dealing with the metropolis as a whole, or covering more than one area of London. Materials span from the 17th century to the 21st century, with archival collections dating mainly from the 20th century. The Archives and Manuscripts catalogue holds further details of these items. 


Warrant signed by the King authorising removal of named convicts from gaols including the Old Bailey to the hulks at Portsmouth prior to transportation to Australia, 1823.
Reference: MS.7830/14

Business records

Anonymous manufacturing apothecary or chemist, London area
Production books, 1741-95.
Reference: MSS.5940-1

Apothecary's Stock Book, probably from London
Inventory of stock, stock ledger and recipes of an unidentified apothecary, perhaps based in London, 1635-7 and no date.
Reference: MS.7646

Chemical and pharmaceutical patents granted to London figures, 1840-1
Reference: MS.5896

Mrs Colson, manager of a nursery, and Joseph Colson, corn-chandler, both probably based in London
Two bills relating to the Colsons and to the landowner John Van den Bempde, 1700-14.
Reference: MS.7677

Lewis and Burrows Drug Stores Ltd
Managing company for pharmacies in several London areas, 1895-1953.
Reference: GC/134

Pharmacists records
Miscellaneous unidentified. 1873-1917, 1925-51.
Reference: GC/103

Edward Slee and Co
Records of manufacture and promotion of Dr Joshua Webster's English Diet Drink, a patent medicine, based at successive locations in the London area (Kennington, Lee, Harlington and Hounslow), 1798-1931.
Reference: MSS.7164-7201

Wellcome Foundation
Material relating to pharmaceutical company’s London operations and establishments, 1880s-1990s.
Reference: WF

Societies, associations and institutions

Askesian Society, forum for scientific discussion, incorporating the British Mineralogical Association from 1806 (members, often London Quakers, including Luke Howard and William Allen)
Minutes of experiments and demonstrations, 1801-3, 1806-8.
Reference: MS.6135

Association of (District) Community Physicians in Greater London
Minutes, 1976, 1980.
Reference: SA/DCP/A.3

Association of Registered Medical Women (later London Association of the Medical Women’s Federation)
Minutes, other documents, financial records, memorabilia, 1879-1916.
Reference: SA/MWF

Biochemical Society
Based in London, also file on London Regional Section, 1991-5.
Reference: SA/BIO

British Medical Association
Includes files on London Public Medical Services 1912-44, and on various London medical institutions and clinics.
Reference: SA/BMA

British Social Hygiene Council (formerly National Council for Combatting Venereal Diseases) (founded 1914)
Includes minutes of the London and Home Counties Branch/London Committee, 1917-40.
Reference: SA/BSH

Brook Advisory Centres
Annual reports of London Centres, 1973-8.
Reference: SA/ALR/F.4

Eugenics Society
Records of their relations with numerous London institutions and societies, 1920s-60s.
Reference: SA/EUG

Family Planning Association (founded 1930 as National Birth Control Association)
Records from a number of local clinics as well as central institutional files dealing with relations with clinics, federations and branches in London, with regional hospital boards, and with local authorities, 1920s-70s, also correspondence with various London societies and institutions, material on London premises of the Association, etc.
Reference: SA/FPA

Health Visitors’ Association
From 1896 to 1906 was an association of Women Sanitary Inspectors and Health Visitors employed in London boroughs.
Reference: SA/HVA

Hunterian Society of London
Records and manuscript collection, 1748-1985.
Reference: MSS.5520-5624

Correspondence concerning manuscript catalogue, 1988-90.
Reference: MS.5778

Tim Lang (born 1948)
Papers of the London Food Commission 1984-1990, in sections A, B and C, plus reports produced by the Greater London Council (GLC).
Reference: PP/TLA

London Literary Society
Certificate admitting Samuel Carey; signatories include George Birkbeck MD (1776-1841), 1823.
Reference: MS.7274/2

London Society for Self-Supporting Dispensaries
Letter by T D Hawker, Secretary, relating to the society and to his leaving the Medical Society of London, 1852.
Reference: MS.6158

London Vaccine Institution
Letters from Sir Francis Milman, physician-in-ordinary to George III, and John Montagu, 5th Earl of Sandwich, accepting Vice-Presidency, 1808.
Reference: MS.7337/30 and 64

Lyceum Medicum Londinense, Medical society
Minute books, 1792-1805.
Reference: MS/MSL/140

Medical Pilgrims
Records of ‘Pilgrimages’ to London, 1932, 1936, 1948, 1964, 1978.
Reference: SA/PIL

Medical Society of London
Manuscript collection.
References: MS/MSL, MSS.6147-6177

Prize essay, 1840
Reference: MS.5463

Microfilmed minutes and correspondence, 1773-1937
Reference: MF/4

Medico-Botanical Society of London
Correspondence, 1815-52.
Reference: MSS.6824 and 7148

Military Hospital Society, London, dining club
Membership list, minutes and accounts, 1764-7.
Reference: MS.5404

Multiple Sclerosis Society of Great Britain and Northern Ireland
Chairman’s files of correspondence with local branches in London area 1954-77.
Reference: SA/MSS

National Association for the Prevention of Tuberculosis
London committee minutes, 1905.
Reference: SA/NPT/A.3/2

National Birthday Trust Fund (founded 1928)
Correspondence with London hospitals and clinics in receipt of donations, etc, 1920s-50s.
Reference: SA/NBT

Pathological Society of London
Undated letter from John William Ogle FRCP requesting a paper for the Society, late 19th century. 
Reference: MS.7364/16

Queen’s Nursing Institute (founded 1889)
Registers of Inspectors’ reports, 1890s, include London districts. Records of conferences, etc, for London area, 1907-36. Records of Elizabeth Fry’s Protestant Nursing Sisters/Nursing Sisters’ Institution, 1841-1939. Minutes of the Federation of Metropolitan Nursing Associations, 1909-21, 1943-64.
Reference: SA/QNI

Royal Army Medical Corps Muniment Collection
Souvenirs and some reports of London Hospitals during First World War; History of the 1st London Sanitary Company, c.1908-20s
Reference: RAMC

Royal Society for Public Health and predecessors
Records relating to London property in London owned by the Sanitary Institute, Royal Sanitary Institute and Royal Society of Health c.1930s-70s, and by The Royal Institute of Public Health and Hygiene, 1900-64. 
Reference: SA/RSP

St Albans Medical Club, dining society originally meeting at St Albans Tavern, Pall Mall
Treasurer's book, 1789-1820.
Reference: MS.6216

Administrative records, 1821-1990.
Reference: MSS.6994-7017

Society for the Improvement of Medical and Chirurgical Knowledge
Learned society and dining club formed of physicians and surgeons from London institutions. Proceedings and later notes, letters by members, etc, 1790-1882.
Reference: MS.5282

Society of Medical Officers of Health/ Society of Community Health/ Society of Public Health (1856-1997)
The Society originated as the Metropolitan Association of Medical Officers of Health Administrative. Records are from 1856 until 1873 when it became a national association, Much material in section K, mainly generated by the Society, relates to public health in London in late 19th century. Also records of the Society’s Metropolitan Branch, 1934-66, and London and Home Counties Branch and Thames Regions, 1965-81 Files in section L on London housing survey (1964), local government organisation and health services in London.
Reference: SA/SMO

Society of Noviomagians
Convivial club composed of members of the Society of Antiquaries of London. Proceedings, including original document recording expenditure of Leathersellers' Company, 1607-8, 1830-1905.
Reference: MSS.5305-7

Sydenham Medical Club
Dining society. Treasurer's books, membership lists, photograph album, 1796-1928.
Reference: MSS.6208-15

Wellcome Historical Medical Museum
Correspondence with numerous London-based institutions, 1898-1985.
Reference: WA/HMM

Other societies based in London but national rather than local in their membership are represented: for example, the National Vaccine Establishment, the Odontological Society, the Physiological Society, the various Royal Colleges and the Royal Society of London For details see catalogues (One item relating to the physical fabric of the Royal College of Surgeons has been included, under Central London).

Legal records

Ludwig Freyberger (died 1934)
Postmortem reports for London coroners’ courts, 1907-13.
Reference: GC/140


Professor Norman Ashton
Materials relating to his own years of medical education, 1930s, and later representation on various committees, etc, of the University of London and other institutions, 1950s-80s.
Reference: PP/ASH

Biochemical Society
London Regional Section file includes material on biochemistry education, 1990s.
Reference: SA/BIO/B.23

Dionysius Lardner
Letters including those relating to chair of natural philosophy at London University, 1827-9.
Reference: MS.5490

London Committee of Licensed Teachers of Anatomy (founded 1880)
Records of this committee, which dealt with the distribution of bodies for anatomical dissection between London medical schools, from 1880.
Reference: SA/LCA

London Postgraduate Course
Letters, papers and financial records, 1894-6.
Reference: MS.6241

Sir John McMichael
File relating to his involvement with University of London Audio-Visual Centre, 1971 and with various other bodies dealing with medical education, 1940s-80s.
Reference: PP/JMM

Medical Women’s Federation
Various materials relating to women’s medical education in London, including campaign against closure of certain London medical schools to women in the 1920s.
Reference: SA/MWF

David Morris
Balint Paediatric Seminars. Transcripts of discussions between paediatricians and psychoanalysts from various London hospitals, 1975-7, with memorabilia of Morris.
Reference: GC/169

Reminiscences of London medical students, 1930s-1950s
Letters and personal accounts, 2002-6.
Reference: MS.8593

See also Personal Papers: Florence Fenwick Miller.

General practice

Balint General Practice Seminars
Held at University College and St Pancras Hospitals, led by Balint, 1966-70.
Reference: GC/216

Oral History of General Practice, 1935-52
Tapes and transcripts interviews with the following London GPs: Geoffrey Hirst, John Swan, Michael Liebson, Kathleen Norton, Anthony Ryle, Eric Grogono, 1993-4. See also under specific areas.
Reference: GP/29

Personal papers, including historical and analytical material

Sir Thomas Barlow (1845-1945),physician
Barlow practised in London and throughout his papers casenotes etc from London institutions (primarily the Hospital for Sick Children, Great Ormond Street), can be found.
Reference: PP/BAR

Items relating to specific parts of London have been indexed separately in the relevant area.

Relating to an unidentified location is: Speech at the opening of an unidentified 'holiday school' for London children, c.1904.
Reference: PP/BAR/G/4

Nicholas Carlisle,antiquary
Notes for an unpublished second edition of his Concise Description of the Endowed Grammar Schools in England and Wales (1818), including files in Middlesex, Surrey, Essex and Kent, 1818-24.
Reference: MSS.5373-4

Herbert Davies Chalke (1897-1979)
Medical Officer of Health, papers include articles and addresses relating to the hygiene of London ice cream parlours c.1936, as well as material relating to public health and welfare in London, with special reference to the care of the elderly in the community and the rehousing of families.
Reference: GC/200

Sir Zachary Cope
Materials for a history of dispensaries, including details of those in London, and of private medical schools in London, 1957-65.
Reference: MSS.1863-70

Sir (William) Allen Daley (1887-1969)
Chief Medical Officer of the London County Council 1939-52. His papers reflect this period of his career in public health.
Reference: PP/AWD

See also his chapter on 'The London County Council and Developments in the Mental Health Services’ in ‘The Expanding Field of Mental Health in England and Wales, 50 years of progress, 1918-1968’.
Reference: MS.7913/20

John Dee, London-based alchemist
Translation into French by Albert Poisson of 17th century life of Dee, c.1890.
Reference: MS.3938

John Dixon, Medical Officer of Health, Bermondsey
Notes on death rates for London, 1877.
Reference: MS.2160

Notes on London's water supply, 1877-80.
Reference: MS.2161

Lyon Falkener
Papers including notes and photographs relating to service at Claybury Asylum, Metropolitan Hospital, St Bartholomew's Hospital and Western Fever Hospital, 1861-1948.
Reference: MSS.6802-9

Alec William James Haggis
Research into medical licensing in England including Diocese of London, 1937-46.
Reference: MS.5345

Ronald Hare (1899-1986)
Papers include his medical education and work as a bacteriologist in several leading London hospitals, 1918-60, also his war service in World War I with the 2/25 London Cyclist Battalion.
Reference: PP/HAR

Harold Burnett Hewitt (born 1915),pathologist and radiologist
Biographical memoir ‘Getting By Without Ambition’ includes his childhood in Palmer’s Green, education at St Paul’s School, career as medical student, and later career as cancer researcher attached to various London institutions.
Reference: GC/222

Hodgkin family, including Thomas Hodgkin MD and Luke Howard
Papers generated by interlinked London Quaker families, the Hodgkins resident first in Pentonville and then in Tottenham, the Howards in Plaistow Letters and autobiographical fragments contain many references to local matters. Examples include material on Thomas Hodgkin's time at Guy's and St Thomas's Hospitals, his service to the London Dispensary, and correspondence with Peter Bedford concerning a school at Croydon; or John Hodgkin junior's letters describing travels in South London and the Surrey hinterland in 1823, and his autobiography. Full catalogue available, 1737-1980.
Reference: PP/HO

Donald Hunter CBE, FRCP (1898-1977)
Reports on visits to London factories in connection with occupational health, 1940s-70s.
Reference: PP/HUN

J R Hutchinson (c.1880-1955) and W H Bradley (1898-1975) of the Ministry of Health
Files on: epidemics in London institutions; vaccination incidents, 1900s-50s; epidemiology of upper respiratory tract infections in air raid shelters, 1940s; material on the Great Smog, 1952-5.
Reference: PP/JRH

Robert Rutson James FRCS (1881-1959), medical historian
Correspondence with other medical historians including material on London medical practitioners, 1934-8 and no date.
Reference: MS.7493

Professor Earl J King (1901-1962), Professor of chemical pathology, Royal Postgraduate Medical School, Hammersmith
Diary containing notes for speeches to various bodies on various occasions, c.1952-1961, including several to the Savage Club.
Reference: GC/271

John Bishop King,medical practitioner at Penang
Diary, including (p7) description of journey down Thames in 1855 at start of voyage to India, 1855-66 and no date.
Reference: MS.7630

Lister family, including Joseph Lister (1st Baron Lister)
Letters and administrative documents including material with reference to London and particularly to Upton, Essex.
Reference: East London section

Sir Robert Macintosh
Diaries relating to visits to anaesthetics departments of London hospitals, 1938, 1947, and travel diaries for London visits of 1964-5.
Reference: PP/RRM/C

Louisa Martindale
Diaries and case notes, covering life in London, 1900-1950.
Reference: MSS.3479-3487

Lady (May) Mellanby
Records of surveys of teeth of children in LCC and private schools, 1940s-50s.
Reference: PP/MEL/H

Florence Fenwick Miller
Autobiography includes accounts of her life as early woman medical student, involvement with radical circles, activities as public speaker in London, election to London School Board, etc, 1870s-80s.
Reference: GC/228

Thomas Paget
Undertaking to pay the Royal College of Surgeons a fee if he should practise surgery in London, 1818.
Reference: MS.7364/55

James Patterson,teacher of deaf and dumb, Manchester
Diary, including record of a visit to London over Christmas/New Year 1858/59, in which he walks about the city, visits the Colosseum, the Pantheon, the Crystal Palace at Sydenham and another establishment of that name at Great Portland Street, and witnesses some mesmeric experiments, 1858-1859.
Reference: MSS.7352-7353

John Lewis Petit MD (1736-1780)
Notes of expenses whilst living in London shortly after qualifying as a doctor, 1761-1769.
Reference: MS.3855

Sir William Petty
Another Essay in Politicall Arithmetic concerning the growth of the citty of London (1683), contemporary transcript c.1690.
Reference: MS.3868

(George) Eric Campbell Pritchard (1864-1943)
Unpublished autobiography ‘Harley Street Calling: some reminiscences of a medical man’; includes references to work for infant welfare in London.
Reference: GC/49

Recipe book
Medical, apparently with a London provenance, late 17th-18th century. 
Reference: MS.7822

Sir Bernard Spilsbury
Notes on autopsies performed by him 1905-33 relate mainly to various areas of London.
Reference: PP/SPI

Sir Henry Wellcome
As well as material relating to his various enterprises based in London, his papers, 1800-1985, reflect his social life and involvement with various London societies and associations (e.g. American Society in London, Freemasons), and include files on his property in Gloucester Gate, Regents Park. 
Reference: WA/HSW

Charles Wilcocks CMG, FRCP (1896-1977)
Unpublished autobiography ‘A Tropical Doctor in Africa and London’.
Reference: GC/55

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