The Harold Blakemore Latin American Archive

  • This material is held at
  • Reference
      GB 532 BLA
  • Dates of Creation
      1930-1991 (photocopies and transcripts of earlier material, 1866 onwards)
  • Name of Creator
  • Language of Material
      English, Spanish or Castilian, French, German, and Dutch.
  • Physical Description
      12 metres

Scope and Content

The bulk of the archive consists of journal articles, conference papers, reports, dissertations and bibliographies on Latin American topics, also British and Chilean newspapers and press cuttings. The archive also includes : articles, lectures and TV scripts by Harold Blakemore -- Subject files of documents, pamphlets and articles on Chilean politics 1970-1978, and on protest about human rights -- Notes from British business archives on historic Anglo-Chilean business links and the nitrates trade, with a particular emphasis on the Bank of London and South America and its predecessors, the London and Brazilian Bank and the London and River Plate Bank -- Official documents, including copies of British Foreign Office correspondence on Chile, Brazil, Argentina and Peru, 1866-1945 -- Maps, guides, rail and air travel timetables -- Slides and postcards of Latin America.

Administrative / Biographical History

Harold Blakemore was born in Mexborough and educated at Mexborough Grammar School. At University College London he specialised in Latin American history : his academic interests remained in the modern history of Latin America and in that of Chile in particular. After teaching History and International Relations at the University of Sheffield, he returned to the University of London to the School of Oriental and African Studies. When, in 1965, the University established the Institute of Latin American Studies he became its Secretary, a post he retained until his retirement in 1987. A prolific author and regular editor, speaker and reviewer, he was editor of The Journal of Latin American studies from 1969 to 1987, joint editor of The Cambridge encyclopaedia of Latin America and the Caribbean (C.U.P., 1985), and a contributor to The Cambridge History of Latin America (Vol. 5, C.U.P., 1986). Beyond the academic world, he was also consulted on commercial matters and was for many years a member of the Latin American Trade Advisory Group. In 1990 Professor Blakemore was invested by the Chilean government with the Bernardo O'Higgins Order of Merit for his "magnificent contribution to Anglo-Chilean understanding". He died in 1991.

Access Information

Available to researchers, by appointment. Access to archive material is subject to preservation requirements and must also conform to the restrictions of the Data Protection Act and any other appropriate legislation.

Acquisition Information

Donated by Mrs. Blakemore, the Professor's widow, in 1993.


English and Spanish. A few items in French, German and Dutch.

Conditions Governing Use

Copies may be supplied or produced at the discretion of Special Collections staff, subject to copyright law and the condition of the originals. Applications for permission to make published use of any material should be directed to the Special Collections Librarian in the first instance. The Library will assist where possible with identifying copyright owners but responsibility for ensuring copyright clearance rests with the user of the material.

Related Material

The J.B. Priestley Library Special Collections also holds an extensive collection of books and periodicals from the library of Harold Blakemore.

The Archives of the Bank of London & South America and its predecessors are held by University College London.


David J. Fox, "Harold Blakemore (1930-1991): an Appreciation" in Bulletin of Latin American Research, Vol. 10, no. 3, 1991, pp. 333-336.

Personal Names