Special Collections

Common or Arctic Puffin from Audubon's 'Birds of America' Common or Artic Puffin from Robert Jeffrey's copy of John James Audubon's 'Birds of America'

Since its founding in 1877, The Mitchell Library has acquired a number of interesting collections and items, either by purchase or donation.  Subject strengths include Glasgow, Scottish Literature and early printed books.  Some highlights:

  • 17th and 18th Century printing and  manuscripts
  • Robert Jeffrey Library

  • Robert Burns Collection

  • Scottish Poetry Collection

  • early Glasgow printed books (before 1800)

  • chapbooks and broadsides

  • watercolours by William 'Crimea' Simpson

  • Private Press Books

  • late 20th Century literary manuscripts

  • Cairns Mitchell Collection of early Scottish maps

  • Kidson Collection


Proof of identification is required to access material from any of our Special Collections, showing name, address and signature e.g. driving licence or electoral registration, plus credit/debit card.  Customers may also be asked for photo ID for some items. Material can be viewed in the search room at the following times:
Mon​ ​Tues ​Wed ​Thurs ​Fri ​Sat
9am -4.45pm​ 9am -7.45pm​ ​9am -4.45pm ​9am - 4.45pm ​9am -4.45pm ​9am -4.45pm
Where possible, anyone wishing to access any of the Library's Special Collections should contact us in advance, particularly if travelling from a distance.
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