Manuscripts and Special Collections

About the project

Between 1965 and 1976 the Department of Manuscripts at the University of Nottingham developed three Archive Teaching Units based on the theme of conflict, designed for use by secondary schools and undergraduate courses. The past 30 years have seen many changes in the way schools and universities present archival materials, and the Archive Teaching Units in their printed form now appear quite out of date. However, the original documents used in the Units are still of enormous importance and interest, and it was felt that it would be useful to offer them as a more flexible electronic resource.

Our aim was to create a resource designed to appeal to a wide variety of users, including:

  • undergraduate and postgraduate students
  • school users
  • lifelong learners
  • local historians

Whereas the original Teaching Units presented extracts from original documents, we have in most cases provided images and transcriptions of the whole document, allowing users to see the entire context of the material.

The original commentaries have been retained.

The lists of suggested reading created in the 1960s and 1970s have been retained, but are also supplemented by lists of more recently published material and other relevant websites.

A combined glossary for the three themes has been newly created for this site. The page in Theme 1 giving the general background to the invasion of England in 1688 has also been newly created for this site.

The only sections of the Teaching Packs not transferred into electronic form in this website were the sections intended for teachers and students. These included suggestions for further work, questions and activities. It was felt that they were not now compatible with National Curriculum requirements, and would be of limited use in their original form. However, we are happy to supply electronic copies of these sections on request.


About the site

This site examines three themes which are illustrated by documents held in Manuscripts and Special Collections.

  • Theme 1 - The Invasion of England in 1688
  • Theme 2 - The 1745 Rebellion
  • Theme 3 - Sir Henry Clinton and the War for America, 1774-1783

Each theme offers:

  • A selection of images and transcripts from original sources including letters and reports
  • Commentary designed to assist users in their understanding and interpretation of the original materials

A range of supporting resources is also available to enable users to place the original documents in context. These include:

  • Glossary
  • Bibliography
  • Links to the Manuscripts Online Catalogue and the Access to Archives (A2A) website, helping users to identify other manuscript sources held at the University


About the sources

Images and transcriptions are all drawn from the holdings of the Manuscripts and Special Collections Section at the University of Nottingham.


Terms of use

'Conflict' was published in November 2006. All content of 'Conflict' is copyright to the University of Nottingham. The materials on these pages (including all commentary, transcriptions, images, etc.) are made available free of charge for personal, non-commercial use only. Any individual or body intending to publish elements of the site in any form or through any medium should fully acknowledge the source.

Any commercial use or publication of the site’s content without authorisation or acknowledgement is strictly prohibited; applications for licence enabling such use should be made to Manuscripts and Special Collections at The University of Nottingham.



If you wish to cite the website in a publication please list it with the URL, and the month and year you accessed it, as in the following example:

Conflict. ed. K. Summerwill, The University of Nottingham. date you accessed the site <>.

Citations of specific documents or images which feature on the site should additionally have their reference numbers; e.g.:

Pw A 2090 - Notes giving instructions on the conduct of secret correspondence; n.d. [1687-1688]


Transfer of the Teaching Units into electronic form

The principal Project Team members for transferring the Units into electronic form have been:

Kathryn Summerwill, Elizabeth Archer and Claire Emery (Manuscripts and Special Collections)


Roles and contributions

Editorial work: K Summerwill

Glossary: K Summerwill

Image processing, website design and delivery: C Emery

Image capture and metadata: M Bentley, A Bowler

Project management: E Archer

The website links to a number of other resources developed by Manuscripts and Special Collections staff.


Teaching Unit credits

The Invasion of England in 1688

Nottingham University Archive Teaching Unit No. 1 was compiled in the spring and summer terms, 1965, by Mrs. M. Bayliss, Miss S. Clover, Mrs. K. McKechnie, Miss W. F. Pretty, and Mr. W. D. Wagstaff, with the assistance of Mr. J. H. Hodson, then Keeper of the Manuscripts, and Mrs. M. A Welch, then Archivist, and revised in November 1976.

The compilers of the first edition acknowledged with many thanks the help of the British Museum (now the British Library) and the National Maritime Museum in supplying photographic negatives and prints of pictures in their collections. They were particularly indebted to Mr. Alan Pearsall, Mr. David Proctor, and Mr. Michael Robinson of the National Maritime Museum for the interest they took in this unit and the help they gave in its preparation. In the revision, full transcripts or translations of the facsimiles were included, and in connection with this the Keeper gratefully acknowledged the help of Dr. D. Duckworth with the translation of the documents written in Dutch.

The 1745 Rebellion

Nottingham University Archive Teaching Unit No. 5 was written by David Burt and Jon Nicol and published in 1975. The Pelham papers were reproduced by kind permission of His Grace the Duke of Newcastle and the Galway manuscript by kind permission of the Dowager Viscountess Galway.

Sir Henry Clinton and the War for America 1774-1783

Nottingham University Archive Teaching Unit No. 6 was produced to complement an exhibition of manuscripts about the American War of Independence, displayed during the spring and summer of 1976, as part of Nottingham University's contribution to the Bicentenary celebrations, and was written by Alan Cameron. The letters used in this unit were drawn from two sources, the Newcastle and the Mellish Papers, and were reproduced by kind permission of his Grace the Duke of Newcastle and the Mellish Trustees. The compiler also thanked Mr J L. Stewart and Dr R.C. Reinders for their help and advice, and the William L. Clements Library for permission to quote from a letter held in their possession.


Next page: Back to all learning resources


Manuscripts and Special Collections

Kings Meadow Campus
Lenton Lane
Nottingham, NG7 2NR

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