Three substantial bequests, together with books received through legal deposit, have made the National Library an important centre for the study of mountains, mountaineering, and the polar regions.
In addition to the bequests — the Graham Brown collection, the Lloyd collection and the Wordie collection — the trust fund endowed by Professor Graham Brown has enabled active acquisition of these subjects.
While climbing in all its aspects remains the central focus of the mountaineering collections, works on such subjects as ecology, geology, hillwalking and the place of mountains in art and literature are also purchased.
The Alps, especially Mont Blanc, and the Himalaya receive the fullest coverage, but our goal is to have representation in the collections on every significant mountain or range of mountains. Discovery and exploration of the Arctic and Antarctica remain the focus of the polar collections, but reports of scientific expeditions and other research materials are acquired too. Among the subjects which feature in these collections are international relations in the polar regions, glaciology and polar whaling.
Other gifts and deposits
The significance of the Library's existing collections in the mountaineering and polar fields has attracted a number of further gifts and deposits, such as the Baume collection, the Humble collection and the Bullock Workman collection (PDF) (58 KB; 6 pages).
Details of the majority of book and journal titles relating to mountains, mountaineering and the polar regions can be found using Library Search.
Please email Paula Williams for general information on these collections.
For information on the relevant manuscript collections email Manuscript and Archives Collections.