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The Shilstone Memorial Library has a rich collection of over 6,000 books, journals and pamphlets, covering subject areas such as Caribbean and Barbadian history, archaeology, pre-history, natural and social history, some American, European and African history, as well as furniture, antiques, silver, art, architecture and craft. Included in its collection are:

  • The Journal of the Barbados Museum & Historical Society (which was first published in 1933).
  • The Bajan Magazine – 1953-1992 with a card index, the only one in existence.
  • Newspaper clippings (over 375 categories, among these being Amerindians of Barbados, the Caribbean and Guyana; Bridgetown, Churches, Jews in Barbados, Military History, Museums, Plantation Ownership, Quakers and Slavery. In addition, the library has articles on various aspects of Barbadian history by Edward Stoute and Warren Alleyne.
  • The Laws of Barbados – including:
    Acts Passed in the Island of Barbados from 1643-1762 by Richard Hall
    The Laws of Barbados collected in One Volume by William Rawlin
    Acts of the Assembly Passed in the Island of Barbados from 1648 to 1718
  • Various directories, Almanacks and Yearbooks, such as The Barbados Directory 1878, 1898, 1899, 1903, 1905-1906 and 1908.
  • Reference material including encyclopaedias, handbooks, genealogies and biographical dictionaries, for example the Dictionary of National Biography. Guides, such as A Guide to Source Materials by Jerome Handler (1971 and Supplement 1991), as well as A Guide to Records in Barbados by Michael Chandler, 1965.
  • Government documents – incomplete sets of the Official Gazettes from 1867-1924, as well as several incomplete sets of Legislative Debates (Debates of the Legislative Council 1914-1915 to 1931-1932). Minutes of Council and Assembly, 1836-1929.
  • Manuscript material:

    The Shilstone Notebook Collection complied by Eustace Maxwell Shilstone covering such subjects as: Barbados Genealogical records, council minutes, Quaker Records, notes on transport, free masons, public buildings, education, Hurricane of 1831, sugar, emigrants, Regimental records, Barbados General Hospital, doctors, railway, House of Assembly Records, Windmills, deeds and wills – 16th – 19th century.

    The Campbell Notebook Collection complied by Diane Campbell, a rich source of Barbados genealogical records as well as notes on Bulkeley Plantation, Carolina Settlers, Hurricane of 1780 and Three Houses Plantation

    The West India Committee Circular, 1904-1958 (incomplete). This organ of the West India Committee covers, economic conditions, travel and description and history of the British West Indies.

    Maps, estate plans and photographs

    Rare books – The Library has a valuable rare book collection with 17th, 18th and 19th century imprints.

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