Archives and manuscripts available at the Library include:
Archives of Conway Hall Ethical Society (under its various earlier names – South Place Ethical Society, South Place Religious Society, South Place Chapel and Institute, Finsbury Unitarian Chapel, Parliament Court Chapel) from 1807. These include:
• Minutes, financial records, membership records, records of society activities, correspondence, photographs and prints, legal records, plans
• Correspondence of its 19th century leaders William Johnson Fox (1786-1864, including a brief manuscript autobiography) and Moncure Daniel Conway (1832-1897)
• Deeds and plans of Conway Hall and earlier buildings on its site from 1685/6
Archives of the National Secular Society from 1875. These include:
• Minutes, financial records, membership records, correspondence and records of society administration and campaigns, photographs, legal and property records.
• Illuminated addresses presented to Charles Bradlaugh (1833-1891) in 1874 and 1887
Some personal papers including:
• The manuscript autobiography of the Chartist leader William Lovett (1800-1977)
• Papers of the humanist leader Harold Blackham (1903-2009)
We have membership records dating from 1895, giving names and addresses of members, and offices held within the Ethical Society, as well as activities and obituaries.
Access to the collections
Please consult the online catalogue or downloadable guides on the right hand menu for more information and to search the archives.
Contact the Library and Learning Manager for more information on accessing the collections.
Please note: Complementary resources including the archives of the British Humanist Association and the Rationalist Association / Rationalist Press Association, and the personal papers of William Bradlaugh can be found at the Bishopsgate Institute.