Part of:
Personal papers of Henry Solomon Wellcome (1853-1936)
  • Archives and manuscripts

About this work


HSW's correspondence has suffered much rearrangement, and it has been impossible to replace in its original archival order.

As HSW's business, historical and private affairs were so interlocking, each series includes correspondence relating to all his spheres of activity: business, social and historical.

The major discrete series of correspondence, (WA/HSW/CO/Gen, 1881-1903), appear to have been created by HSW's secretary, H Finnis Johnson, who was based at Snow Hill. The majority of this correspondence concerns HSW's social activities, including Freemasonry and membership of The American Society in London.

The group WA/HSW/CO/Bus is an artificially constructed group of correspondence relating largely to business matters. It includes a series of business memoranda of 1901-2, plus microfiche letterbooks 1874-1880. Matters relating to HSW's personal and collecting interests are also discussed in this correspondence.

At some point, perhaps after HSW's death, letters relating to certain 'significant' individuals were removed from their original series to be placed in artificially created ones, including the Autograph Letter Sequence in the Library. No record was kept of their provenance (some may have originated in HMM, not HSW personal, files), so it has not been possible to return them to their original archival place. They may now be found in WA/HSW/CO/Ind and WA/HSW/PE/A. However, related correspondence with the same correspondent or about the same issue often remains in original series, so readers are advised to cross reference by means of a name search. In some cases, cross-references are given here in the list.

Some of HSW's personal correspondence appears to have been filed with HMM correspondence, especially where it related to membership of learned societies or to HSW's historical interests. WA/HMM/CO/Sai/A, a series of Johnston Saint correspondence files, deals with matters relating to HSW's personal affairs, such as the repair of a clock or instructions for the filing of HSW's personal papers.



Physical description

18 boxes

Acquisition note


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