Arranging the collections

The Museum libraries are organised to provide easy access for scientists and researchers.

The creation of a centralised book purchase system in 1948 meant that acquisitions for all libraries became the responsibility of the Museum Librarian. 

The libraries themselves were physically arranged to complement Museum scientists and their collections.This arrangement of Library stock still exists today, ensuring that wherever possible, Museum scientists who specialise in one area have both the specimens they study and the relevant literature close by.

The classification scheme devised by Bernard Woodward is still in use today in many of the collections. The botanical and mineralogical collections have been reclassified to Universal Decimal Classification. Journals are arranged by country of publication and assigned a unique location.

Menelaus blue morpho
Library collections

Explore books, maps, artworks, manuscripts, periodicals and photographs.