Manuscripts and Special Collections

The East Midlands Collection

The East Midlands Collection is an important resource for regional local studies, built up gradually since the early 1930s. For many years it served primarily to assist researchers using the manuscript collections.

Today it has grown to number over 8,000 books and 13,000 pamphlets, with nearly 600 bound volumes of periodicals. The majority of post-1850 titles are available for use in the King’s Meadow Reading Room, but earlier publications form a series within the Special Collections.


Map of Nottingham from 1741

Thomas Badeslade, A Map of Nottingham Shire North from London (1741) [Not 1.B8.D41]


The Collection contains books, pamphlets, periodicals, maps and illustrations on the historic counties of Derbyshire, Leicestershire, Lincolnshire, Nottinghamshire, and Rutland, and on the region as a whole. The library of the Nottinghamshire Thoroton Society forms part of the resource, underlining the importance of local history.

A significant number of current acquisitions are research publications by local historians.


Illustration showing Bolsover Castle

Bolsover Castle, from E. Rhodes, Peak Scenery (London, 1824) [Der 1.D28.RHO]


The Collection is concerned with all aspects of regional life, and includes works about the natural sciences, architecture and building, planning, archaeology, economic activity, and social and cultural issues.

Newspapers, periodicals and local newsletters are an important part of the collecting policy for the East Midlands Collection. Some titles were short-lived and surviving copies are difficult to locate.


Cutting from The Football Glance dated 1903

The Football Glance, 1903 [Not U]


One section within the Collection is devoted to the University, including official and unofficial publications, about 200 periodicals, and ephemera issued by student groups since 1979. This is a steadily expanding part of the Collection, as the University’s own history has become a subject of research and publication. Former staff and alumni have helped to build the collection with donations of books and student publications.


Illustration from the Illustrated London News showing Gladstone addressing a crowd at University College Nottingham

Laying the memorial stone of the new University College at Nottingham: Mr Gladstone addressing the crowd, from Illustrated London News, 6th October 1877 [Not 5.E6]


Cover of The Gong from 1914

The Gong, University College Nottingham magazine, 1914 [Not U]

Nottingham University's Coat of Arms

Nottingham University Coat of Arms, granted 1948




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Manuscripts and Special Collections

Kings Meadow Campus
Lenton Lane
Nottingham, NG7 2NR

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