The archive collections

Find out more about the archive collections of the Royal Institution.

  • Credit: Royal Institution

About

The archive collections of the Royal Institution include the personal papers and experimental notebooks of many of the scientists who have researched, lectured and lived in the building. The major personal collections include the papers of Humphry Davy, Michael Faraday, and William and Lawrence Bragg along with smaller collections of associated individuals such as John Davy, Sir William Crookes, Benjamin Thompson and Louisa Tyndall.

The collection also contains documents relating to the running of the Royal Institution, covering everything from the initial modifications to the building, minutes of managers and Council meetings, membership and lecture lists. Together they give a very detailed picture of life at the Ri over the last two centuries.

Visit

Anyone with a research query is welcome to visit the Ri Archive reading room at 21 Albemarle Street.

Find out how to visit the Ri archives

Personal collections

The major personal collections include the papers of scientists who have researched, lectured and lived in the building including: Humphry Davy, Michael Faraday, and William and Lawrence Bragg along with smaller collections of associated individuals such as John Davy, Sir William Crookes, Benjamin Thompson and Louisa Tyndall.

Find out more about the Personal Collections.

Administrative archives

The administrative archives cover everything from the initial modifications to the building, minutes of managers and Council meetings, membership and lecture lists. Unlike the personal collections they have not been historically well documented but the backlog is currently being addressed, if you have a query about a specific member or lecture at the Ri please contact archivist@ri.ac.uk

Audio-visual archives

Alongside the paper archives we have a collection of AV material, mostly of past lectures. Some film material, mostly of the broadcast CHRISTMAS LECTURES, is available on the Ri Channel.

Related collections

The Royal Institution archives are closely linked to both the apparatus and iconographic collections held in the Faraday Museum.

For more information or if you wish to book an appointment to view the archives please click here.

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