Manuscripts and Special Collections

All Catalogues

The Manuscripts Online Catalogue

The Manuscripts Online Catalogue is the main catalogue for the manuscript and archive collections, and can be searched or browsed.

  • Watch the video to get an introduction to using the Manuscripts Online Catalogue (try a different browser if it fails to play)


Over 600 manuscript, archive and special (printed) collections are described at collection level. Collection level records include advice on other available finding aids, including typescript catalogues.

Some of the manuscript and archive collections are described more fully at series and item level, in over 300,000 separate catalogue records. The amount of detail varies between collections. Search options include associated name and place indexing. Collections with extensive indexing include the D H Lawrence manuscript collection, the Archdeaconry of Nottingham archive, and the Portland, Newcastle, Buchanan and Denison family and estate collections.


Special Collections Online Catalogue

Most of the books and other printed material classified as Special Collections are catalogued in detail on the University of Nottingham's Library catalogue, NUsearch. General descriptions of the scope of each Special Collection are also given on the Manuscripts Online Catalogue .

If you are able to log in to NUsearch (University of Nottingham staff and students and library card holders), you can use NUsearch to make online bookings to view Special Collection items in the Manuscripts and Special Collections Reading Room.

  • Watch the video to see how to make an online booking (try a different browser if it fails to play)


Typescript catalogues

Typescript catalogues of manuscript and archive collections are available in the Reading Room at King's Meadow Campus for most of the principal collections.

Please note that some collections have had extensive additional cataloguing undertaken through externally funded projects, and that in these cases the original typescript lists have now been very considerably enhanced. In all cases it is advisable to consult the upgraded versions in the Manuscripts Online Catalogue

Copies of many older catalogues are also lodged with the National Register of Archives at The National Archives Reader Enquiries Room, The National Archives, Kew, Richmond, Surrey, TW9 4DU. Indexes drawn from the catalogues are accessible via The National Archives' Discovery search.

The majority of older catalogues have also been published in microform as Unit 15 of the Chadwyck-Healey National Inventory of Document Sources in the United Kingdom (1987), which can be consulted at many major public and research libraries.


National cataloguing projects  

Some of our manuscripts catalogues can be searched online alongside catalogues from other archive institutions. Please note that the catalogues were submitted at the time of the project, and the version in our own Manuscripts Online Catalogue  may be more up to date.

Find out more information about national cataloguing projects and the collections involved:

Manuscripts and Special Collections

Kings Meadow Campus
Lenton Lane
Nottingham, NG7 2NR

telephone: +44 (0) 115 951 4565
fax: +44 (0) 115 846 8651