Manuscripts and Special Collections

Working together

Volunteers working on manuscript and printed collections

Volunteers working on manuscript and printed collections 

In many different ways, the work of Manuscripts and Special Collections depends on other people and organisations.

Local volunteers assist in cataloguing and preservation programmes, and many projects involve partnerships with colleagues in other offices or support from different funding sources.

National bodies, and particularly the Victoria & Albert Museum Purchase Fund, have given generous support in the University’s acquisition of important papers. In 1993, for instance, correspondence from her emigrant sisters added an American dimension to the holdings of the Nottinghamshire-based writer Mary Howitt.


Detail from an illustrated letterhead

Letterhead showing Cincinnati, Ohio, 1840s [Ht 7/2/17] 


Archives throughout the country have benefited greatly from the Heritage Lottery Fund. In addition to cataloguing and conservation work on particular collections, the University has received lottery funding to participate in regional cataloguing partnerships.

This has resulted in the online delivery of some 65 finding aids through the Access 2 Archives (A2A) dabatase hosted by The National Archives.

A separate higher education initiative has enabled the submission of 400 collection level descriptions in the online Archives Hub.

The collections in question are also catalogued on our own Manuscripts Online Catalogue.



Cover of a souvenir programme titled, 'Lille en fue! Haut les cœurs!'

Souvenir programme relating to the occupation and evacuation of Lille, 1918 [MS 155/4]


The regional agency MLA EM (Museums, Libraries and Archives, East Midlands) and the East Midlands Regional Archive Council (EMRAC) have prompted other successful local collaborations. The University contributed to EMRAC’s promotional booklet 'Journey to the Past: Your Guide to East Midlands Archives', and to Em:source, an online educational resource which provides images and learning materials relating to the First and Second World Wars.



Group photograph of soldiers and nurses in a hospital ward

Wounded soldiers with some of their nurses, in the Jubilee Wing of Nottingham General Hospital, 1916 [Ph 3/4/1] 


Widespread local interest in D.H. Lawrence has produced other forms of liaison with colleagues. For example, the University’s website 'D.H. Lawrence: celebrating a literary life’ included material both from Manuscripts and Special Collections and from the Durban House museum at Eastwood.


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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