About the Archives
**Please note that the College Archive is closed to external enquiries (including local history and family history queries) from 1st August to 30th November 2017. This closure is to free up staff time to prepare for major collection moves later in the year. It may be possible to accommodate visits from academics and students during this period with sufficient prior notice. Please contact the Archivist for more details: firstname.lastname@example.org **
The documents held in the archives of Magdalen College fall into several categories:
- Documents about the administration of the College, including statutes and minute books.
- Documents about the College’s estates, including many early title deeds (some dating back to the twelfth century), manorial court records from medieval times to modern ones, leases, and maps.
- Documents about the College’s finances from the 1480s onwards.
- Documents about the College’s buildings, including one of the largest collections of architectural drawings in any Oxford or Cambridge College.
- Papers from some former Presidents, Fellows, and undergraduates. To find out more about the personal papers we hold here, go to the ARCHON directory of record repositories on the website of The National Archives here, and search for Magdalen College there, for a list of many of the collections which we hold.
Do note, however, that we hold very few records actually about undergraduates. We also hold almost no records about College servants.
It may be possible to to find out where the personal papers of former members of the College may be kept by using the “Discovery” option on on the website of The National Archive. Click here to find it. It is not, however, very easy to use.
The Archivists of the Oxford Colleges have created a special website, with a very useful page of answers to questions often asked of us by our searchers. Click here to see it.
If you have not contacted a College archive before, we suggest that you look at this website before contacting us, as it will help you decide whether we can help you or not.
The website also provides contact details for archivists in other Colleges, links to the University Archives and other archives in Oxford, and a glossary of Oxford terms.