New and interesting

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New exhibition

“The National Society for Epilepsy and the Chalfont Centre for Epilepsy: 125 years on”. Launched to coincide with Purple Day on 26th March, the exhibition includes photographs, objects and documents from the Epilepsy Society Archives and will run in Queen Square Library, 23 Queen Square until June 2019. Please see exhibition handout for further information.

With many thanks to Nicola Swanborough and her colleagues at the Epilepsy Society for their help and support in curating the exhibition.

Queen Square - Camden and the Zenith of Neurology : Illustrated talk on the intriguing history of the National Hospital Queen Square, and its impact on world neurology and on Camden

Tuesday 11th June 2019 at 7.15pm (Doors open at 6.45pm)
Speaker: Professor Simon Shorvon, Professor of Clinical Neurology and author of the book: Queen Square : a history of the National Hospital and its institute of neurology.
Camden Local Studies & Archives Centre, 2nd Floor, Holborn Library, 32-38 Theobalds Road, London WC1X 8PA
Admission Free. Please contact for further information

Queen Square: A History of the National Hospital and its Institute of Neurology

a definitive history of both The National Hospital and the Institute from 1860 to 1997, authored by Simon Shorvon, Alastair Compston, Andrew Lees, Michael Clark, and Martin Rossor. Available to purchase online with all proceeds of sales going to the National Brain Appeal.

We’re delighted to be able to offer a discounted rate of £48 for staff at UCLH and UCL Queen Square Institute of Neurology staff and students. To claim this discount, please email or visit Queen Square Library with your ID card (please note: we can only accept cash payments in the Library).

Photos from the launch, 20th November 2018

Recent donations

Book of photographs of NHNN, focusing on the Postgraduate School of Neurological and Neurosurgical Nursing class of 1963. Donated by Nancy Merson (nee Wheaton) who was a member of the 1963 class. The book is available for reference in the Library upon request, and photographs have been added to our website.

WWI’s Secret Shame: Shell Shocked : 12th November, 9-10pm, BBC2

In this programme, which features footage and materials from Queen Square Archives, Dan Snow discovers how the shell shock of WW1 has evolved into the cases of PTSD that modern soldiers suffer with today. Delving into previously unseen archives he reveals the difficult history of how Britain has reacted to the psychological consequences of warfare. Dan interviewed Stefanie Linden, author of They Called it Shell Shock which draws heavily on our Archives, as part of the programme. Box of Broadcasts (from 7mins) (UCL (or other institutional) password required for access)

Gowers’ sketchbooks

We have recently digitised several Gowers’ sketchbooks from the late 19th century, many of which are now available online. The sketchbooks include detailed drawings of St Ives, Dover, and Southwold, as well as collections of drawings of figures, and some watercolour landscapes. With many thanks to Rebecca Gowers for loaning these to the Archives.

Gowers’ shorthand diaries

We are delighted to have received a transcription of Gowers’ shorthand diaries which has been diligently transcribed by Ann Scott. Two hard copies are available in the Library.

*PDF version
*Interactive version

This includes two diaries kept while he was a medical apprentice and a great deal of detail about daily life in Coggeshall, Essex, in the 1860s. The most interesting of the entries were incorporated into the following book: William Richard Gowers 1845-1915, Exploring the Victorian Brain Ann Scott, Mervyn Eadie, and Andrew Lees. OUP, 2012.

Older news

Extensive collection of Gowers correspondence and children’s journals digitised

Patient 39 - PATIENT 39 is a short film adaptation of William Boyd’s short story ‘Ghost of a Bird’, starring Mark Bazeley and Alfie Stewart. Accompanying articles by Professor Andrew Lees

Here are a few ways of exploring interesting items from the archives:

Please also see our Items for Sale page