The collection

About 4,000 items, mainly published from the seventeenth to the early twentieth centuries. The primary subject is the history of London: the City of London is strongly featured, but all of London is included, with topics covering culture, economy, politics, society and topography. Forms range from scholarly and popular monographs to guidebooks, broadsides, directories, pamphlets, newsbooks, prints, proclamations, and maps. The 17th century is particularly well represented with around 1250 items, including material on Lord Mayors’ pageants and a remarkable number of Civil War pamphlets. Another subject covered by the collection is the settlement of Australia.


The collector

Collected by Lieutenant Colonel Alfred Claude Bromhead (1876-1963), a co-founder of Gaumont Cinemas.



Donated in 1964 by the executors of Bromhead’s  estate.



Catalogued online 1996 (pre-1801 books); 2011-12 (post-1801 books). For an overview of the collection, do an author search on “Bromhead, A. C.” as former owner or a mixed classmark search on [B.L.]. The latter calls up items in date order up to 1800 and in alphabetical order of author’s surname after that.
Material printed after 1800 is held off-site and material requires 48 hours (excluding weekends) to be fetched.


Related archives

MS817 (a mixture of items created by him and manuscripts from his collection).