The Royal Statistical Society Collection

Scope and Content

The Royal Statistical Society collection at the Albert Sloman Library is essentially a historical books collection. As such, what follows is merely a selection of the titles found in the collection and should by no means be taken as a comprehensive listing of the contents of this archive.

All books in the collection have been included in the Albert Sloman Library catalogue: Albert Sloman Library

The content can be summarized as follows:

  • The Pamphleteer 1818-1826
  • British Journal of Psychology 1947-52
  • The British Journal of Statistical Psychology 1953-64
  • British Journal of Mathematical and Statistical Psychology 1965-1979; 1981-84
  • American Statistical association 1847, 1888-1917
  • Annali di Statistica 1878-1894, 1895-1919, 1929-1965, 1966-1994
  • Archivio di Statistica 1876-1882
  • Annuaire de Longitude 1818-1878
  • Ireland - statistical and Social Inquiry Society 1860-1951
  • Revue de l' Insitut International de Statistique, 1944-71
  • Transactions of the Manchester Statistical Society 1857-1991
  • Netherlands Statistical Insitute
  • Annual Abstract of Statistics 1935-1983
  • Annuaire Statistique 1860s
  • Quarterly Journal of Economics 1880s-1985
  • Actuarial Society of America 1889-1919
  • Assurance Magazine 1859-1890
  • Institute of Actuaries 1891-1988
  • Report of the British Association for the Advancement of Science 1832-1938
  • Pamphlets - bound miscellaneous publications covering a range of subject material
  • Tracts series 1 to 6
  • Tracts - biometry Volumes 1 to 28
  • Tracts - various statistics, Volumes 1 to 22
  • Tracts - theory of statistics, Volumes 1 to 15

Administrative / Biographical History

The Royal Statistical Society was established in 1834. The minutes of the first meeting of the society, convened on 15 March of that year, declared that 'a Society be established in the name of the Statistical Society of London, the object of which shall be the collection and classification of all facts illustrative of the present condition and prospects of the Society, especially as it exists in the British Dominions'. From its earliest days the Society was keen to build up a library of statistical works. By 1885 its collections comprised 20,000 works.

Following its foundation the Society expanded its activities, establishing its own journal, bestowing prizes and medals. In 1933 an Industrial and Agricultural Research Section was set up.

To this day the Society's declared mission is 'to develop, foster and disseminate statistical knowledge, methodology and good practice for the benefit of all society'. The Society has 7 Sections, 3 Study Groups and 23 Local Groups that are spread throughout Great Britain, as well as Europe (the Three Country Corner) and Tanzania.

The main archival collection is housed in the Society's current premises in Errol Street, London; the Society has changed premises seven times over the past 165 years. In September 2000, the Society and the Albert Sloman Library at the University of Essex came to an agreement. This ensured that henceforth the Special Collections Section at the Albert Sloman Library would house the Society's historical book collection.

Access Information

By written application to either the Librarian or Deputy Librarian. A letter of introduction may be required and prospective users will be obliged to sign an undertaking outlining the terms and conditions of access to the research materials.

Acquisition Information

Royal Statistical Society


This record was compiled by David Borg-Muscat, UK Data Archive, using entries from:

Albert Sloman Library (2000) A Note on Special Collections, (University of Essex: Albert Sloman Library), p. 5.

Record entered by Nadeem Ahmad of Qualidata, UK Data Archive, University of Essex.

Other Finding Aids

A record for all materials in the Special Collection is available via the Albert Sloman Library, Special Collections web page.

Conditions Governing Use

No part of the Special Collections material may be reproduced, published, stored in a retrieval system or transmitted in any form, or by any means, electronic, mechanical, photocopying, recording or otherwise, without the prior permission of the Albert Sloman Library. This may be obtained by application to the Librarian or Deputy Librarian.

Appraisal Information

In consultation with academic colleagues, the library special collections acquisitions staff evaluate collections by assessing their relevance to the teaching and research interests of the University.

Custodial History

An agreement was reached in September 2000 between the Royal Statistical Society and the University of Essex, which resulted in the permanent depositing of the Society's Historical Books collection with the Special Collections Section at the Albert Sloman Library.


The papers were acquired as a single donation. It is unlikely that the collection will be added to in the future, though the possibly should not be ruled out entirely.

Additional Information

University of Essex: Albert Sloman Library.