This collection of documents was formerly housed in trunks and boxes in the Cabinet Room in Chetham's Library. The library has no records relating to this material, although it was clearly deposited by Taylor, Kirkman and Mainprice, solicitors to the Hospital and Library.
The material, which was arranged in no order whatsoever, was separated into two collections: F1.1-F.1.20, 20 boxes chiefly relating to Lancashire and Cheshire, and F.2.1-F.2.2, 12 boxes containing 249 documents relating to other counties.
Material of local interest was listed by Ian McAlpine, Library volunteer, in 1990-91. On grounds of convenience, however, the documents were then physically sorted into chronological order within an alphabetical order of places. Documents which were gathered into bundles have not been interfered with, hence material on Hindley is found with Abram and Hindley and material relating to the Culceth family of Culceth has been kept in the order in which it was found. Documents relating to places unspecified are listed at the end of the handlist.
The documents have been numbered by the first letter of the place and then in chronological order. Collections relating to Manchester and Salford are numbered respectively Ma, Sa, whilst unspecified documents are numbered X1-14. All of the documents have been labelled in a form that corresponds to the handlist.