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British Isles Online Primary Resources: Subject Orientation
This is a guide to the major electronic resources M.S.U. Libraries has bought or is subscribing to about/from the British Isles. It can be used for literary, historical, political, or social/economic topics.
Adam Matthew Archive Explorer is a way to do a general search across many of Adam Matthew digital collections. They are an English company offering digital collections of English primary sources, many of which we own. Quite a number of the resources listed in this section come from this company.
medieval to modern British History Online is a digital library of core printed British rimary and secondary sources about people, places, and businesses from the medieval through modern periods. It is being created jointly by the Institute of Historical Research and the History of Parliament Trust. Texts from the Centre for Metropolitan History, the Victoria County History Project, Survey of London, and early journals of the Houses of Commons and Lords are also present.
500-1914 English Historical Documents Online is the online version of a significant set of print books (Main DA 25 .E55 or .E56). The database contains copies of over 5,500 primary source documents from the British government. Documents about all aspects of life are represented: society, economics, labor, education, politics, military/war, diplomacy, administration, religion, culture, health, etc. Search for particular documents by their title or by names of persons associated with their creation. Browse by date, theme, or place.
12th-15thc.This project provides an extensive collection of manuscript materials for the study of medieval travel writing in fact and in fantasy. The core of the material is a magnificent collection of medieval manuscripts from libraries around the world and dating from the 13th to the 16th centuries. The main focus is accounts of journeys to the Holy Land, India and China.
15th c. This resource contains full colour images of the original medieval manuscripts that comprise these family letter collections along with full text searchable transcripts from the printed editions, where they are available. The original images and the transcriptions can be viewed side by side.
1420-1920 Delve into the earliest voyages of Vasco da Gama, the opening of trade with the Spice Islands, the colonisation of the Americas and Australasia, the search for the Northwest and Northeast Passages, and finally the race for the Poles with this robust primary source collection. Illustrations. Contains correspondence, diaries and journals, rare manuscripts and printed books, scientific and government papers, ships' logbooks, charts and maps. Materials are from American Philosophical Society, Bibliotheque Nationale de France, British Library, British Film Institute, Explorers Club (NYC), Glenbow Museum (Calgary), Bell Library (U. of Minn.), Lilly Library (Indiana U.), Massachusetts Historical Society, National Archives U.K., Newberry Library (Chicago), Turnbull Library (U. of New Zealand). Age of Exploration video clips.
1450-1910 Defining Gender, 1450-1910 provides access to a vast body of original British source material that will enrich the teaching and research experience of those studying history, literature, sociology and education from a gendered perspective.
1492-1969 Empire Online offers about 60,000 images of original documents linked to essays by leading scholars in the field of Empire Studies. The sections cover Cultural Contacts, (1492-1969); Empire Writing and the Literature of Empire; the Visible Empire; Religion and Empire; and Race, Class, and Colonialism (c1783-1969). Maps, manuscripts, pamphlets, paintings, drawings, and rare books are included. Five centuries of history are represented.
1500-1700This collection of sources provides insight into two centuries of everyday political, religious, working, trading and administrative life in Early Modern England. Documentation such as legal records, family papers, annotated printed books, commonplace books, and wills, offer a window through which to study overlooked members of society during this period - shedding light on what life was like for the ‘ordinary’ person. Materials are sourced from a range of archives including The National Archives, UK, the British Library, Shakespeare Birthplace Trust, and the Newberry Library.
1558-1945 British and Irish Women's Letters and Diaries includes the immediate experiences of approximately 500 women, as revealed in over 100,000 pages of diaries and letters. Particular care has been taken to index this material so that it can be searched more thoroughly than ever before. The collection now includes primary materials spanning more than 300 years. Each source has been carefully chosen using leading bibliographies. The collection also includes biographies and an extensive annotated bibliography of the sources in the database.
16th-20thc.This resource aims to represent a range of key food and drink history stories from the evolution of food within everyday life to haute cuisine, charting key issues around agriculture and food production, and looking into advertising histories of key food and drink brands. The materials in this collection illustrate the deep links between food and identity, politics, power, gender, race, and socio-economic status. Material has been sourced from institutions across the United States (including Michigan State University), the United Kingdom and Australia with a focus on gaining as global a view on food history as possible. The bulk of the material ranges from the sixteenth century to the early twenty-first century. Module 2 includes six rare Apicius cookbooks, the earliest of which dates from the ninth century.
Includes Modules 1 and 2. Food and Drink in History video clips
7th c.-20thc. From government-led population drives during the early nineteenth century through to mass steamship travel, Migration to New Worlds showcases unique primary source material recounting the many and varied personal experiences of 350 years of migration. Explore Colonial Office files on emigration, diaries and travel journals, ship logs and plans, printed literature, objects, watercolours, and oral histories supplemented by carefully selected secondary research aids
c1550-1850. This collection of manuscript, visual and printed works allows scholars to compare a range of sources on the history of travel, including many from private or neglected collections. Included are letters; diaries and journals; account books; printed guidebooks; published travel writing; paintings and sketches; architectural drawings and maps.
1600- Module 1: Trade, Governance and Empire, 1600-1947
Module 2: Factory Records for South Asia and South-East Asia
Module 3: Factory Records for China, Japan and the Middle East
Module 4: Correspondence: Early Voyages, Formation and Conflict
This digital resource allows students and researchers to access a vast and remarkable collection of primary source documents from the India Office Records held by the British Library, the single most important archive for the study of the East India Company.
1624-1832 The first module of Colonial Caribbean documents the history of British colonies throughout the Caribbean from early settlement to the eve of the Slavery Abolition Act passed in 1833. This module features volumes from The National Archives, UK sourced from 26 different Colonial Office (CO) series (sometimes referred to as file classes) which include material related to 27 Caribbean colonies. All volumes dated between 1624 and 1832 within these series are included in Module 1. Also featured are selected volumes from the War Office (WO) at The National Archives, UK; volumes that are dated within this time period and covering the same 27 Caribbean colonies have been included.
late 17th c.-20th c.This resource brings together manuscript, printed and visual primary source materials for the study of global commodities in world history. The commodities featured in this resource have been transported, exchanged and consumed around the world for hundreds of years. They helped transform societies, global trading operations, habits of consumption and social practices. You can study particular commodities (coffee, silver, gold, cotton, tobacco, chocolate, etc.), see sources from particular companies (Hudson's Bay Co., Cadbury's, etc.), choose a "popular search" to get ideas to pursue, look at documents on particular themes (in advertising and consumption, exploration and discovery, politics and empire and more), There are historical maps. You can look at price data over time. And there are pictures of the commodities in the Visual Resources section.
You can study particular commodities (coffee, silver, gold, cotton, tobacco, chocolate, etc.), see sources from particular companies (Hudson's Bay Co., Cadbury's, etc.), choose a "popular search" to get ideas to pursue, look at documents on particular themes (in advertising and consumption, exploration and discovery, politics and empire and more), There are historical maps. You can look at price data over time. And there are pictures of the commodities in the Visual Resources section.
MODULE I: EARLY SETTLEMENT, EXPANSION AND RIVALRIES
The first module of Colonial America documents the early history of the colonies, and includes founding charters, material on the effects of 1688’s Glorious Revolution in North America, records of piracy and seaborne rivalry with the French and Spanish, and copious military material from the French and Indian War of 1756-63.
MODULE II: TOWARDS REVOLUTION
This module focuses on the 1760s and 1770s and the social and political protest that led to the Declaration of Independence, including legal materials covering the aftermath of the Boston Tea Party. It is also particularly rich in material relating to military affairs and Native Americans.
MODULE III: THE AMERICAN REVOLUTION
This module charts the upheavals of the 1770s and 1780s which saw the throwing off of British rule in the Thirteen Colonies. Contents include volumes of intercepted letters between colonists, the military correspondence of the British commanders in the field and material produced by the Ordnance Office and the office of the Secretary at War, as well as two copies of the ‘Dunlap’ edition of the Declaration of Independence printed on the night of the 4th-5th July 1776.
MODULE IV: LEGISLATION AND POLITICS IN THE COLONIES
The material in this module consists mostly of the text of acts of assembly and the minutes of assembly and council sessions, building up to a comprehensive picture of the colonies’ legislative and political evolution.
MODULE V: GROWTH, TRADE AND DEVELOPMENT
The preponderant part of this module consists of correspondence with the Board of Trade. There are also details of land grants, financial accounts and documents focusing on American Indian relations, as well as George Vancouver’s despatches to London from his 1791 expedition to the Pacific Northwest. The module contains a number of shipping returns, accompanied by a video interview with Hannah Knox Tucker (PhD candidate, University of Virginia), who discusses these documents and their value for researchers in detail.
1737-1824 Eighteenth Century Drama features the John Larpent Collection from the Huntington Library – a unique archive of almost every play submitted for licence between 1737 and 1824, as well as hundreds of documents that provide social context for the plays. Explore the Larpent plays, papers of prominent theatrical figures of the period, including correspondence, financial documents, and portraits. Cross-reference this with essential searchable databases created from information in The London Stage 1729-1800 and A Biographical Dictionary of Actors, Actresses, Musicians, Dancers, Managers & Other Stage Personnel in London, 1660-1800
18thc.-20th c. London Low Life is a full-text searchable resource, containing colour digital images of rare books, ephemera, maps and other materials relating to 18th, 19th and early 20th century London. In addition to the digital documents, London Low Life contains a wealth of secondary resources, including a chronology, interactive maps, essays, online galleries and links to other useful websites.
1779-1930 Victorian Popular Culture contains primary sources about popular entertainment in the United Kingdom, United States, and continental Europe from 1779 - 1930. Four sub-sets: Spiritualism, Sensation and Magic; Circuses, Sideshows, and Freaks; and Music Hall, Theatre and Popular Entertainment; and Moving Pictures, Optical Entertainments and the Advent of Cinema. Emphasis is on visual sources with a useful slideshow gallery for teaching and presentations. Some secondary resources are included: interactive chronology, biographies, glossary, bibliography. Digitization in color. Includes films from British Film Institute 1894-1926. Victorian Popular Culture video clips
1850s-1930s Contains Research Sources 1: British and Irish Architectural and Decorative Applied Arts 1850-1930s database. This is an ongoing project to digitize all books, exhibit catalogues, journals, and trade literature on this subject published in Britain and Ireland during this period. The resources include biographical information on architects, artists, and designers whose works are discussed or illustrated.
19th c. This collection makes available the John Murray archive held at the National Library of Scotland. One of the most important surviving publishing archives, the John Murray company published authors
who shaped the modern world through their writings, including Darwin, Austen, and Livingstone. The archive includes material on publishing history, book history, travel writing, politics and poetry, and also holds the most complete archival collection of the famed poet, Lord Byron.
19th c. This multi-archive collection, including content from the London Metropolitan Archives and Senate House Library, comprises a wealth of primary source material, such as administrative records,
which detail the intricacies of the workhouse systems, and publications of settlement houses which document how hardships were alleviated through charitable efforts. Material focusing on philanthropic endeavors gives insight into the shift in social conditions and welfare reform in the period, as care for
the poor and general public health conditions developed.
1800- Contains primary sources documenting the changing representations and lived experiences of gender roles and relations from the nineteenth century to the present,covering sources for the study of women's suffrage, the feminist movement, the men’s movement, employment, education, the body, the family, and government and politics. The materials come from Trinity College (Cambridge), Michigan State University Libraries, Hagley Museum (Delaware), Bryn Mawr College, Rylands Library (U. of Manchester), Mary Evans Picture Library (London), Glenbow Museum (Calgary), U. of Melbourne.
19th-21st centuries From its roots as an Anglican evangelical movement driven by lay persons, this resource encompasses publications from the CMS and the latterly integrated South American Missionary Society. Documenting missionary work from the 19th to the 21st century, the periodicals include news, journals and reports offering a unique perspective on global history and cultural encounter. Module I is comprised of periodicals published by the Church Missionary Society and South American Missionary Society from 1804-2009. Module II contains periodicals and annual reports published by the Church Missionary Society and its auxiliaries, and the Church of England Zenana Missionary Society, from 1816-1986. Documents are indexed by places (region, city, and mission station), countries, names and key search terms.
1850-1980This resource presents a multi-national journey through well-known, little-known and far-flung destinations unlocked for the average traveller between 1850 and the 1980s. Guidebooks and brochures, periodicals, travel agency correspondence, photographs and personal travel journals provide unique insight into the expansion, accessibility and affordability of tourism for the masses and the evolution of some of the most successful travel agencies in the world. Leisure Travel and Mass Culture:The History of Tourism video clips
1850-1949 Module 1: 1850-1927. Module II: 1928-1949. Medical Services and Warfare presents digitized primary source material including military, scientific, professional and personal perspectives on medicine during conflicts across the globe from 1850-1949. Students and scholars can research medical developments including x-rays, plastic surgery and artificial limbs, with a focus on rehabilitation, nursing and the psychological toll of war. Highlights include the personal correspondence of Florence Nightingale and the scientific notebooks of Alexander Fleming (both now fully searchable thanks to innovative Handwritten Text Recognition technology), the diaries of VADs, hospital records, and literature from the Red Cross. Enabling comparisons of medical advances across conflicts, the resource includes documents from the Crimean War, the Boer Wars, the American Civil War, the First World War, the Spanish Civil War, the Second World War and inter- and post-war periods. Through analogous hospital records, medical reports and first-hand accounts, users can chart the progress of scientific advances informed by the experience of war.
Includes Module I: 1850-1927, and Module II: 1928-1949.
1851-present Explore the phenomenon of world's fairs from the Crystal Palace in 1851 and the proliferation of North American exhibitions, to fairs around the world and twenty-first century expos. Through official records, monographs, publicity, artwork and artifacts, this resource brings together multiple archives for rich research opportunities in this diverse topic.
1897-2005 Country Life is a weekly British culture and lifestyle magazine focusing on fine art and architecture, the great country houses, and rural living. Every page is fully searchable, and reproduced in full color and high resolution. Country Life Archive presents a chronicle of more than 100 years of British heritage, including its art, architecture, and landscapes, with an emphasis on leisure pursuits such as antique collecting, hunting, shooting, equestrian news, and gardening.
20thc. This collection explores changing attitudes towards human sexuality, gender identities and sexual behaviors throughout the twentieth century. Investigate the breadth and complexity of human sexual understanding through the work of leading American sexologists, sex researchers, organizations and the public consciousness.
Includes: Module I: Research Collections from The Kinsey Institute Library & Special Collections. Module II: Self-Expression, Community and Identity. Module II has titles from British Film Institute, 1917-1995: silent films, feature-length productions, short films commissioned for TV, and public info ads produced by British gov., charities, and businesses. Sex and Sexuality video clips
20thc.This collection of films from the communist world reveals war, history, current affairs, culture and society as seen through the socialist lens. It spans most of the twentieth century and covers countries such as the USSR, Vietnam, China, Korea, much of Eastern Europe, the GDR, Britain and Cuba. Module I, Wars & Revolutions. Module II, Newsreels & Cinemagazines. Module III, Culture and Society. Films were imported into Britain to be shown to British audiences. The ones produced in Britain tend to focus on class differences. Socialism on Film video clips
1941-1996 Immigrations, Migrations & Refugees: Global Perspectives, 1941-1996, a fully searchable digital archive, includes firsthand accounts from reputable sources around the world, covering such important events as post-World War Jewish resettlement, South African apartheid, Latin American migrations to the United States, and much more.
1950-1975 Provides primary source information on the popular culture of the U.S. and U.K. from 1950 to 1975. Original archival material from libraries, including manuscripts, typescripts, and ephemera, as well as video clips, are included. Includes new content for 2013 on popular entertainment, mass media and consumer culture.Popular Culture in Britain and America 1950-1975 Video clips
1981-1996An essential resource for the study of late twentieth-Century British social history, Mass Observation, Module I: 1980s comprises directives (questionnaires) and their responses sent out between 1981 to 1989 by the Mass Observation Project - a pioneering social research organisation. Directive responses provide insight into the opinions of the general public on key topics such as the Falklands War, general elections, the government’s AIDS-awareness campaign, and the European Economic Community (EEC).
Border and Migration Studies Online is a collection that explores and provides historical background on more than thirty key worldwide border areas, including: U.S. and Mexico; the European Union; Afghanistan; Israel; Turkey; The Congo; Argentina; China; Thailand; and others. Featuring at completion 100,000 pages of text, 175 hours of video, and 1,000 images, the collection is organized around fundamental themes associated with border and migration issues.
National Theatre Collection brings the stage to life through access to high definition streaming video of world-class productions and unique archival material offering significant insight into theatre and performance studies. Through a collaboration with the U.K.'s National Theatre, this collection offers a range of digital performance resources never previously seen outside of the National Theatre’s archive.
Shakespeare in Performance showcases rare and unique prompt books from the world-famous Folger Shakespeare Library. These prompt books tell the story of Shakespeare’s plays as they were performed in theatres throughout Great Britain, the United States and internationally, between the seventeenth and twentieth centuries.
Shakespeare’s Globe Archive offers insights into performance practice in the particular space and playing conditions of the reconstructed Globe Theatre. In addition, it details the way in which the theatre was reconstructed as a place of radical theatrical experiment through which to examine the plays of William Shakespeare and others. The archive documents over 200 productions from 1997-2016 through prompt books, wardrobe notes, music, performance photographs, programmes, publicity and marketing material, research, show reports and architectural plans. This collection will be of great interest to anyone studying Shakespeare, theatre studies, early modern literature and cultural history.