North Family Papers

  • This material is held at
  • Reference
      GB 161 MSS. North a. 1-17, b. 1-29, b. 31-79, c. 1-86, d. 1-71, e. 1-45, f. 1-8, f. 10-17, g. 1-4; North music c. 1, d. 1-17; North adds. b. 1, c. 1-11, e. 1-2
  • Dates of Creation
      13th-20th century
  • Language of Material
      English, Latin, Italian, French, and German.
  • Physical Description
      349 shelfmarks

Scope and Content

Papers of the North family. The largest groups of papers in the collection are the estate and personal papers of Francis North, 1st Earl of Guilford, and Frederick, 2nd Earl of Guilford. There are smaller groups of personal papers of other members of the family ranging from Edward, 1st Baron North, in the 16th century, to William, 12th Baron North, in the late 19th century. Many of the title deeds and estate papers in the collection are papers of other families whose property came to the Norths by purchase or marriage. Some papers of John Stuart, 3rd Earl of Bute, of Sir Julius Caesar, and of Clementina Walkinshaw, mistress of the Young Pretender, are also in the collection.

Administrative / Biographical History

North family, Barons North and Earls of Guilford. Their principal seat was Wroxton Abbey, Oxfordshire. The family included Francis North, 1st Earl of Guilford (1704-1790) and his son, Frederick, 2nd Earl of Guilford (1732-1792), better known as Lord North. Details of Francis and Frederick North are given in the Dictionary of National Biography. For further details of the members of the family included in this collection see Scope and Content.

Access Information

Entry to read in the Library is permitted only on presentation of a valid reader's card (for admissions procedures see

Acquisition Information

The papers were bought by the Pilgrim Trust and given to the Library in 1932.


Collection level description created by Emily Tarrant, Department of Special Collections and Western Manuscripts.

Other Finding Aids

M. Clapinson and T.D. Rogers, Summary Catalogue of Post-Medieval Western Manuscripts in the Bodleian Library Oxford. Acquisitions 1916-1975. (Oxford, 1991), vol. II, nos. 49362-710.

A detailed calendar (1960) and an index to the calendar (1973) are available in the Library and at the National Register of Archives.

Custodial History

The papers were kept at Wroxton Abbey, Oxfordshire, until 1932.

Related Material

See also Additional Papers of the North Family (MSS. North adds. a. 1, b. 2-9, c. 12-16, e. 6-7).