New: Records relating to the slave trade at the Liverpool Record Office

I am pleased to report that Oxford users now access to the online Records relating to the slave trade at the Liverpool Record Office (British Online Archives: British Records on the Atlantic World, 1700-1900) via SOLO and Databases A-Z.

Records relating to the slave trade at the Liverpool Record Office - pamphlet

This full-text database provides access to one of the best collections in British archives of private merchants’ papers relating to the transatlantic slave trade.

Liverpool was the leading slave trading port in the world in the eighteenth century when these documents were compiled.


The material includes

  • correspondence with ship captains and Caribbean agents about the acquisition of Africans and their sale; statistics on the Liverpool slave trade
  • sales accounts of the lots of Africans disembarked in the Americas, often with the names of purchasers and prices; information on dealings with diverse African groups along the coast of West Africa; and details of payments for slave sales.
  • account books of ships’ voyages with material on the outfitting of vessels and the cargoes of goods exported to Africa.
  • Records of the wealthy merchant and banker, Thomas Leyland (c.1752-1827), who was three times Mayor of Liverpool.
  • Letters by the slave trade captain, John Newton (1725-1807), who later became a clergyman, the composer of the hymn ‘Amazing Grace’, and a prominent abolitionist.

Other useful resources

Enjoy! If you have any problems, please contact library staff.

Launched: Welsh Newspapers Online (beta)

Great news! Yesterday the beta version of Welsh Newspapers Online was launched.

Welsh Newspapers Online ( is a free online resource from the National Library of Wales where readers can discover millions of articles from the Library’s rich collection of historical newspapers.  It’s a great resource for esp. 19th century research. Over 250,000 pages from 24 newspaper publications are currently accessible and the aim is to provide over 1 million pages during 2013. Newspapers include Aberystwyth Observer, South Wales Star, Aberdare Times, Celt (Bala) and many others.

It will be added to SOLO and OxLIP+ shortly.

welsh newspapers online

New: Queen Victoria’s Journals (1832-1901)

Sample from a journal page in Queen Victoria’s handwriting

Queen Victoria’s Journals is a website which reproduces every page of the surviving volumes of Queen Victoria’s journals (including draft volumes and copies made by Lord Esher and Princess Beatrice). It provides full transcriptions and keyword searching of the journal entries covering the period from Queen Victoria’s first diary entry in July 1832 to 13 January 1901. In total 141 volumes of her journal survive, numbering 43,765 pages.

As well as detailing household and family matters, the journals reflect affairs of state, describe meetings with statesmen and other eminent figures, and comment on the literature of the day. They represent a valuable primary source for scholars of nineteenth century British political and social history and for those working on gender and autobiographical writing.

Queen Victoria’s sketch of the children

This website reproduces as high-resolution colour images, every page of the surviving volumes of Queen Victoria’s journals, along with separate photographs of the many illustrations and inserts within the pages.

Each page is also being meticulously transcribed and re-keyed, allowing for journals to be searched. At the time of launch, only a portion of the transcribed text will be available. More transcriptions are being added regularly as the project progresses.

The project to digitize Queen Victoria’s Journals has been undertaken in partnership with the Bodleian Libraries, Oxford, the Royal Archives, London and Proquest. The release of Queen Victoria’s Journals has been timed to coincide with the celebrations to mark the Diamond Jubilee of Queen Elizabeth II – the only British Monarch other than Queen Victoria to have reigned for 60 years.

The Queen Victoria’s Journals website is mobile-compliant and can be viewed from all iPhones, Blackberry and Android phones.  The website is supported by a Facebook page at and Twitter at @QueenVictoriaRI.

Oxford users: it will shortly be added to OxLIP+.

Related websites:

Bodleian Libraries news: HM the Queen launches online resource of all Queen Victoria’s Journals 

BBC: Diamond Jubilee: Queen Victoria’s diaries go online (with little video clip)

The Independent: Queen Victoria’s diaries to go online

The Guardian: Queen Victoria’s private journals published online