Home Office Extra

Scope and Content

Home Office Extra includes copies of letters from before the foundation of the Missionary Society [later London Missionary Society] and correspondence between its founders, letters from (and to) supporters and occasional critics. Items of particular interest in the series include correspondence about the mission to the Foulahs (Fulas) in Sierra Leone (1797), the intention to send missionaries to India (Box 1, Folder 7), proposals for a mission to St Helena (1804-33), dealings with the East India Company, between members of the Cowie family and concerning the care of William Milne’s family following his death in 1863. Many letters come from missionaries on furlough leave or (more often) on deputation tours strengthening support for LMS in Britain. Some correspondence relates particularly to the formation and activity of the supportive Missionary Auxiliary societies in various parts of the British Isles and the specific features of LMS support in Wales, Scotland and Ireland. Other letters deal with support for missionaries’ widows and orphans, appointment and retirement of senior Mission House staff and honorary officers, the annual missionary meetings and sermons (held in May, increasingly co-ordinated with the Spring meetings of the emerging Congregational Union of England and Wales – constituted 1832) and some benefactions to the LMS.


Historically, this sequence of letters has been kept separately from the other Home Office correspondence series. Although the reasons for this are unclear, this original arrangement has been retained.

Access Information


Other Finding Aids

A detailed list for Home Office Extra, 1764-1943 (list A1 & A1 add.) is available for consultation in the Special Collections Reading Room, SOAS Library.

Archivist's Note


Related Material

As the Home Extra series comprises both incoming and outgoing correspondence of the LMS Home Office the letters should be considered alongside those in the separate series of Home Office Incoming Correspondence and Home Office Outward Correspondence, with which there is a considerable overlap.