A history of the University through archives

The University’s Special Collections and Archives’ new exhibition displays artefacts collected from before the University’s beginnings, as University College in 1881, through to the present day.

This exhibition celebrates 50 years since the establishment of the University Archive in 1968. The repository currently comprises over 2000 linear meters of material and continues to grow, receiving a wide range of deposits from the University, it’s staff and alumni, benefactors, affiliated members and other external donors and individuals.

Photograph of students on Panto day in 1930. (Ref: D949/2/1-2)

The Archive has over 137 years of records in its collections, such as administrative records, personal papers of former staff and students, photographs, objects and ephemera relating to the history of the University of Liverpool. Since the 1990s it has formed part of the University’s Special Collections and Archives, and is available for all to consult in the Sydney Jones Library reading room.

Reflections from student Charles Lowe, 1925-1929.

Jenny Higham, Special Collections and Archives Manager at the University of Liverpool, said: “The items on display have been specially selected to show different aspects of University life since its foundation. It’s an excellent opportunity for staff and students to see how the University has grown and changed.”

Guild of Undergraduate Dance and Debating Programmes, 1919-1922. (Ref: D386)

Some highlights include the University of Liverpool Appeal poster from 1920, which advertises the University: ‘Help the youth to realise Ambition – Therein lies Efficiency and the Nation’s Destiny’.  You can also see the ‘Grant of Arms’: Grant by Garter Principal King of Arms, Clarenceux King of Arms and Norroy King of Arms to the University of Liverpool, (30 October Edward VII [1903]), as well as photographs of student life and activities.

Post Card of Victoria Gallery

Postcard showing exterior of Victoria Building, late 1890s. (Ref: D587/1/1)

The new exhibition is now open for viewing and can be found on the ground floor of the Sydney Jones Library in the Grove Wing. The Special Collections and Archives are open weekdays from 9.30am – 4.45pm and closed at weekends. Find out how to visit and access the Special Collections & Archives.

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