Penguin and related archives

Special Collections holds a wide variety of materials on the establishment and business life of Penguin Books Ltd., and some of its imprints, as well as a large collection of Penguin books from 1935 to date.  

The Penguin Archive

The Penguin Archive contains the archives of Penguin Books Ltd. from its foundation in 1935 to the 1990s. It includes a wide variety of materials on the establishment and business life of Penguin Books Ltd., as well as social events, legal cases (particularly the Lady Chatterley's Lover trial of 1960), exhibitions on the company's history, and the private lives of prominent figures in the early history of the company, including Sir Allen Lane, Eunice Frost, Betty Radice and Hans and Tanya Schmoller. There are also materials relating to translations that were published. 

Website of the AHRC-funded Penguin Archive project, 2008-2013.

The Penguin Book Collection

An extensive collection of the publications of Penguin Books Ltd. from its first book in 1935, Andre Maurois’s Ariel, to the present day. The earliest books, dating from 1935 to 1969, were originally part of Sir Allen Lane’s personal collection of approximately 7,800 Penguin books, mostly signed by the author or editor.  

Front cover of Beethoven Symphony number 3 in E flat showing title and decorative background.
Beethoven Symphony No. 3 in E flat (Penguin Scores 23).

Hamish Hamilton Archive

The Hamish Hamilton Archive (1931-1986) includes editorial files and notable correspondences with authors by Jamie Hamilton and editors such as Roger Machell.

Rough Guides Archive

The archive, including first editions of Rough Guide books, merchandising materials (including posters, dumpbins, sponge bags), and compact discs, was donated by Rough Guides' founder and Bristol graduate, Mark Ellingham.

A medieval manuscript. Online Archive Catalogue

Contains descriptions of many of our archive collections.

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