History Collections
Find out more about history collections and History Day

History Collections

Find out more about history collections and History Day

LSE Library


Founded in 1896 the British Library of Political and Economic Science (LSE Library) aimed to provide primary materials from all over the world to enable research on the social, political, legal and economic environment, and a ‘laboratory’ of the social sciences was born. Since then, many significant private collections and papers were donated and collections built to support research and teaching in the social sciences.

Get in touch if you are interested in using our collections for your research library.enquiries@lse.ac.uk


History Day 2023 contributions

Current exhibition: Resistance, Rights and Refuge: Britain and Chile 50 years after the Chilean coup Dr Tanya Harmer explores the themes of resistance, rights and refuge in relation to culture, politics and lived experience drawing on collections from LSE and the Living Refugee Archive, University of East London.


The Library’s unique archive collections focus on modern British political and economic history, in particular the work of pressure groups, think-tanks and campaigners, and include, Charles Booth’s London, The Women’s Library’s collections, LGBT+ collections (Hall Carpenter Archives) and peace and internationalism.

The expanding Digital Library enables access to extraordinary materials including:

  • Autograph Letter Collection An extraordinary collection of letters to Women’s Service Library (now The Women’s Library) between 1930 and the early 2000s.
  • George Lansbury Archives – personal papers and correspondence covering many political and social issues of the early 20th century.

Discover more stories through the LSE History blog or visit our YouTube channel for discussions covering, Race, empire and decolonising, Peace and Internationalism and The Women’s Library collections.


History Day 2021 contributions


History Day 2020 contributions


Join Indy Bhullar, Curator for Economics and Social Policy, as he introduces some of LSE Library’s newly digitised Economic History collections. This includes full runs of some key statistical and official publications on a wide variety of topics, covering the 19th – 20th centuries and that can aide researchers of many hues. Titles in the collection include the Labour Gazette, The Annual Report of the Registrar General and plenty more.

This 20 minute talk will introduce some of the main archives and special collections at LSE Library. These will include collections in the Women’s Library as well as the Hall-Carpenter archives, material relating to welfare and social security, Brexit, peace and internationalism, and more. We will also outline some of our digital holdings and explain how to find archives using our catalogue.