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Identity statement

Reference code(s)
KING'S COLLEGE LONDON: Inventories and stock books
Level of description
Sub-fonds of King's College London Archives
Extent and medium of the unit of description (quantity, bulk, or size)
3 boxes and 1 large volume


Name of creator(s)

King’s College London

Administrative / Biographical history

King's College London was founded in 1829. The College first began to accept students in 1831. Over its history the College had several museums and laboratories, which in the 19th century collected and bought various types of artefacts and equipment for teaching and experimental purposes. The Departments and Museums kept inventories of the collections they held that give an insight into the working the College at that time. The George III Museum, part of collection of scientific apparatus collected by, amongst others, George III, previously held at the King’s own observatory in Kew, was donated to the College in 1841. In 1875 Sir Charles Wheatstone, (1802-1875), Professor of Experimental Philosophy, left his books and scientific instruments to King's College London on his death, which were also housed in the George III Museum, which was renamed the Wheatstone Laboratory. The Museum was transferred to the Science Museum in 1926, though the College retained many items from the Wheatstone Collection. The Anatomy museum consisted of many items presented to the College through its history including a collection of wet preparations, casts and models presented by Dr Robert Hooper, (1773-1835) and Joseph Henry Green, (1791-1863), Professor of Surgery, 1830-1836; a collection of Osteological specimen and skeletons presented by J C Bellamy of Plymouth; a collection presented by the widow of Alfred William, Hughes, (1862-1900), Professor of Anatomy, 1897-1900; a collection presented by Sir David Ferrier, (1843-1928), Professor of Forensic Medicine, 1872-1889, and Professor of Neuropathology, 1889-1908. The Anatomy Museum was still in existence in 1959, though the collections were stored under the care of various Professors. The College also had museums dedicated to collections relating to medicine (Materia Medica), Chemistry, mineralogy, geology, botany. The College dining hall was available for pupils at the King’s College School and students, though staff and Associates could also eat there. In 1865 the equipment in the dining room was sold and was let for £200 a year to raise funds for the College.

Content & structure

Scope and content

King’s College London inventories, 1831-1914, including inventories regarding donations to the College museums, 1831-1887, (K/INB1); inventories of equipment in the College Laboratories and departments, 1865-[1900], (K/INB2); King’s College London stock books, listing the value of various stock held by the College, 1852-1914, (K/INB3).

System of arrangement

The collection is arranged chronologically into the sections above.

Conditions of access & use

Conditions governing access

Open, subject to signature of reader’s undertaking form.

Conditions governing reproduction

Copies, subject to the condition of the original, may be supplied for research use only. Requests to publish original material should be submitted to the Director of Archive Services.

Language/scripts of material
Finding aids
The draft catalogue is available online and in hard copy in the Archives reading room. 

Allied materials

Existence and location of originals
King's College London College Archives
Related units of description

King’s College London Archives: George III Museum Collection, [1768-1970], (REF: K/MUS); Wheatstone Collection, 1757-1992, (REF: K/PP107); In-correspondence, containing letters regarding donations to the museums and departments, and regarding the dinning room, 1829-1986, (REF KA/IC); King’s College London calendars, 1832-1959, listing information on the museums, departments, dining room, and staff, (REF: Calendars). King’s College London Special Collections: books and pamphlet belonging to Charles Wheatstone including off-prints of scientific society proceedings, exhibition catalogues and books relating to magnetism, electricity, optics, sound and the electric telegraph.

Description control

Rules or conventions

Compiled in compliance with General International Standard Archival Description, ISAD(G), second edition, 2000; National Council on Archives Rules for the Construction of Personal Place and Corporate Names 1997.

This catalogue is made available under the Open Data Commons Attribution License. This catalogue may be updated from time to time in order to reflect additional material and/or new understandings of the material.

Date(s) of descriptions

2006 Jan, updated 2016

Box List(s)

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