Historical records of the Ethical Society’s activities and membership.
About The Collection
Since 1886, Conway Hall Humanist Library and Archives has been a haven for the radicals, political and social reformers and freethinkers who dared to dream of a better world. The first incarnation of the library at the Society’s then home, South Place Chapel, Finsbury, appeared at a time when public lending libraries were scarce, and self-education was being promoted. Members of the Society proposed that a library be instated, and the first donations were requested from the membership. Beginning as a general lending library offering a wide-ranging collection of diverse subjects to suit the needs of the membership, the library has since evolved and grown to become the country’s only specialist humanist library. Along the way we have acquired the library of the Rationalist Press Association, the Stanton Coit Library, and the National Secular Society’s Library and Archives.
Our collections include printed materials such as books, pamphlets and journals as well as archival material of unpublished institutional and personal records and papers, such as manuscripts, letters and photographs. We also have a collection of artworks and artefacts.
You can find more detailed information on our collections and our collections policy below.