Records of individuals and families

Revealing personal records.


These cover a vast range, from unique items such as the notebook of John Rastrick - the judge at the Rainhill Trials in 1829 - to the sole surviving personal diary of Robert Stephenson, through to large collections such as the papers of Timothy Hackworth and his family, and the papers of the inventor William Yorath Lewis, who tried to bring a perpetually moving 'never stop railway' to fruition.

There's also:

  • Noted railway historians such Dr. Michael Bonavia and C.F. Dendy Marshall
  • Bodies that shaped railway preservation and historical study over the years, including the Heritage Railway Association and the Railway & Canal Historical Society.
  • Papers from the campaign to save the Woodhead Trans-Pennine route in the 1970s and 1980s
  • Some personal papers of Sir Peter Parker, one of BR's most respected Chairmen
  • Drivers' diaries and logbooks, training course notes and service papers

Note that we don't hold Trade Union archives – these are mainly centred at the University of Warwick's Modern Records Centre.

The lists below cover relatively substantial deposits of a box or more. We have small deposits and individual documents relating to various railway figures, including the great pioneering names such as Stephenson. There's also a backlog of uncatalogued and unsorted material that's gradually being worked on. Detailed catalogues and lists can be accessed by visiting us.

Baxter, Frank Engineering dept London North Western Railway, London Midland Scottish
Baxter, Frank archive list

Beaver, Stanley H, Professor
Beaver, Stanley H., Professor archive list

Bonavia, Michael Dr
Bonavia, MR archive list

Boston, Alfred John, Stephenson Locomotive Society
Boston, Alfred John, Stephenson Loco Soc archive list

Click, John G
Click, John G, archive list

Cox, E.S., Locomotive Engineer
Cox E.S., Locomotive Engineer archive list

Crispin, S.J., Structural Engineer
Crispin, S.J., Structural Engineer archive list

Dewhurst, P.C. (c.1884-1964), railway engineer and historian
List currently unavailable.

Gooch, Sir Daniel
Intro records of Gooch, Sir and archive list

Graham, John Stockton and Darlington Railway
Introduction to Graham, John, Stockton and Darlington Railway

Hackworth family archive
Introduction to Hackworth family Archive & archive list

Hornbuckle, Tommy Midland Railway / London Midland Scottish locomotive engineer
Hornbuckle, Tommy archive list.

Horsfield, H.T., Civil Engineer
Horsfield, H.T., Civil Engineer archive list

Hudson, George
Introduction to Petition Borough of Sunderland supporting George Hudson
Introduction to Petition ECR
Introduction to Petition York and Newcastle Railway Company

Hughes, H.C. (1943-1998), railway historian and statistician
List currently unavailable.

Hughes, J.O.P., Designer, English Electric
Introduction Hughes, J.O.P., Designer, archive & list

Johnson, Robert, Civil Engineer
Introduction to archive of Johnson, Robert & archive list

Ladell, Arthur Osborne, Harold Wood
Introduction to Arthur Osborne Harold Wood and archive list

Mallory, Geo Gibson, Captain (SS Maline)
Mallory, Geo Gibson (SS Maline) archive list

Margary, Peter John, Railway Engineer
Intro to Maragary and archive lists

Maunsell, R.E.L., Chief Mechanical Eng, Eastleigh
Maunsell, R.E.L. archive list

Melling, John Locomotive superintendent London and Midland Railway
Intro to records of Melling, John & archive list

Neele, George Potter, Superintendent of line LNWRS
Neele, George Potter, LNWRS archive list

George Ottley, railway historian and bibliographer
List currently unavailable.

Pearce Higgins, Selwyn
Pearce Higgins, Selwyn archive list

Pease, Henry Stockton and Darlington Railway
Intro to corresp of Pease, Henry _S&DR_ & archive list

Purvis, Thomas Charles, Artist
Introduction to archive of Purvis, Thomas Charles and archive list

Rennie, Sir John
Intro to accounts & reciepts Rennie, Sir John &list

Stephenson, George
Intro to Stephenson, George & archive list

Stephenson, Robert
Introduction to records re to Stephenson, Robert & archive list
Stephenson, Robert (estate papers) archive list

Trevethick, Francis, Richard
Introduction to records of Trevithick, Francis, Richard & archive list

Turner, Howard
Turner, Howard archive list
Turner, Howard list of instruction books

Webb, F.W.
Webb, F.W., archive list

Worthington family archive
Introduction to Worthington family archive & archive list

Yorath-Lewis, William engineer (1961-257)
Mainly relates to the ‘Never Stop Railway’ continuous transportation system. List currently unavailable.

Background: Suitcase with railway luggage labels