The Willoughby Collection

Archive Collection

Scope and Content

The collection comprises a numerical series of files of general papers (1-1000), with accompanying finding aids, a series of bibliographic papers arranged alphabetically by surname of author of publication, a series of papers relating to the Abstract of Evidence submitted by Willoughby to the Commission on the Uniformity of Discipline in Native Churches in South Africa [Fifth General Missionary Conference on South Africa, 1921], and a series of miscellaneous material.

Administrative / Biographical History

Willoughby served as a missionary with the London Missionary Society (LMS). He was sent to Bechuanaland in 1893 and was founder of the Native Institution of Tiger Kloof. On his retirement from mission work in 1917 at the request of the LMS he undertook a deputation to Australasia and the islands of the South Pacific. In 1919 he was offered and accepted the position of Professor of African missions at the Kennedy School of Missions at Hartford, Connecticut, United States of America, where he taught and researched until 1931. He then returned to Birmingham, England, and died in 1938.

Willoughby was the author of various publications including Native life on the Transvaal border (1900); The soul of the Bantu : a sympathetic study of the magico-religious practices and beliefs of the Bantu tribe of Africa(1928); Tiger Kloof : the London Missionary Society's Native Institution in South Africa(1912); Nature-worship and taboo: further studies in "The soul of the Bantu" (1932); Race problems in the new Africa : a study of the relation of Bantu and Britons in those parts of Bantu Africa which are under British control (1923)

Reference: University of Birmingham, Special Collections Department, Online Archive Catalogue (http://calmview.bham.ac.uk/). Accessed May 2002.

Arrangement

The collection is arranged into four series: numerical series of files of general papers with accompanying finding aids; bibliographic papers arranged alphabetically by surname of author of publication; papers relating to the abstract of evidence prepared by Willoughby for the Commission on the Uniformity of Discipline in Native Churches in South Africa, Fifth General Missionary Conference on South Africa, 1921 and associated research material; and a series of miscellaneous material.

Conditions Governing Access

Open. Access to all bona fide researchers. All papers held at the Orchard Learning Resources Centre will be viewed at the Birmingham University Information Services, Special Collections Department. Please contact the University Archivist for further information.

Acquisition Information

This collection was deposited by Willoughby's son, (?on behalf of executors), in 1940.

Other Finding Aids

A catalogue is available in electronic format on the Birmingham University Information Services, Special Collections Department website: http://calmview.bham.ac.uk/ and in paper format within the Department.

Conditions Governing Use

Permission to make any published use of any material from the collection must be sought in advance in writing from the University Archivist, Special Collections. Identification of copyright holders of unpublished material is often difficult. Special Collections will assist where possible with identifying copyright owners, but responsibility for ensuring copyright clearance rests with the user of the material.

Custodial History

Following the merger of the Selly Oak Colleges and the University of Birmingham in 1999 the custodial ownership of collections belonging to the Selly Oak Colleges and held at the Orchard Learning and Resource Centre (OLRC) was transferred to the University. These collections now form part of the University's Special Collections Department and are available for consultation at the Main Library on the University's Edgbaston Campus.

Related Material

This collection contains correspondence which indicates that Willoughby deposited personal memorabilia collected whilst in Africa at Brighton museum. It has not been possible, however, to obtain any further details. Other papers of Willoughby are held in the LMS archives, Serowe, Botswana, Southern Africa; Moeding College (successor of the Tiger Kloof Native Institution, Vryburg), Moeding College, Otse, Botswana; the Botswana National Archives, Gaborone, Botswana; archives of the Council for World Mission at the School of African and Oriental Studies; archives of the Case Memorial Library (Hartford Seminary Foundation, Hartford, Connecticut, USA); and Mansfield College, Oxford (holders of Spring Hill College archives).

The Orchard Learning Resources Centre and the University of Birmingham, Special Collections Department holds a rich collection of archives relating to missions, charities and other religious and ecclesiastical organisations and individuals.

Bibliography

John Rutherford, W. C. Willoughby of Bechuanaland: missionary practitioner and scholar, University of Birmingham, Dept of Theology. Thesis (Ph. D), 1983.