Friendly Society of Journeymen Bookbinders of London And Westminster

Archive Collection

Scope and Content

Volume of printed material relating to the Friendly Society of Journeymen Bookbinders of London and Westminster, including two manuscript items, namely Articles of the Society 'finally agreed to at Mitchell's Rooms, Portsmouth Street, March 24th 1820'; and a letter from James Carss, the Society's Secretary, to John Shaw, concerning the audit of the Society's accounts, [1832].

The Society was instituted to promote 'a good understanding harmony & unanimity amongst the Journeymen Bookbinders of London & its vicinity, & to prevent any encroachments in their rights & privileges'. The articles here listed to which members subscribed concern the organization of the society, the duties of officers, the conduct of members.

Administrative / Biographical History

Friendly societies comprised a group of people contributing to a mutual fund so that they could receive benefits in times of need. The concept had been around for hundreds of years, but in the 1800s, their role was acknowledged by the government and membership was encouraged. The early meetings were often held as a social gathering when the subscriptions would be paid. Prior to the Welfare State they were often the only way a working person had to receive help in times of ill health, or old age.

The Journeymen Bookbinders of London were founded in 1786, becoming known as the London Consolidated Lodge of Journeymen Bookbinders in 1840.

Conditions Governing Access

Access to this collection is unrestricted for the purpose of private study and personal research within the supervised environment and restrictions of the Library's Palaeography Room. Uncatalogued material may not be seen. Please contact the University Archivist for details.

Acquisition Information

Bound in a Goldsmiths' Library volume containing a printed version of the articles of the same society of 1828. Enclosed in a case lettered 'Friendly Society of Journeymen Bookbinders Articles, 1820, 1828'. The volume was originally from the library of John Shaw.

Other Finding Aids

Collection level description.

Physical Characteristics and/or Technical Requirements

8¼" x 5"

Archivist's Note

Compiled by Sarah Aitchison as part of the RSLP AIM25 Project.

Conditions Governing Use

Copies may be made, subject to the condition of the original. Copying must be undertaken by the Palaeography Room staff, who will need a minimum of 24 hours to process requests.