Papers of Graham Pollard (1903-76)

Scope and Content

The Pollard papers fall into two groups: records of Birrell & Garnett Ltd., including the firm's catalogues, orders for books, and files of correspondence, mainly 1927-39; and bibliographical working papers and personal correspondence of Graham Pollard.

Administrative / Biographical History

Birrell & Garnett Ltd., antiquarian and new booksellers, was founded in 1920 by Francis Birrell (1889-1935) and David Garnett (1892-1981). In 1922 Ralph Wright became a partner. Henry Graham Pollard (1903-1976) bought Garnett's share in 1924. In 1927 Jane Norton (1893-1962), the bibliographer of Gibbon, bought the shares of Birrell and Wright, and in July 1927 the firm was reorganized as a limited company, with Jane Norton and Graham Pollard as directors, and Frances Marshall (later Frances Partridge) as secretary. The company went into voluntary liquidation in March 1939. The new books department was sold to Bernard Quaritch Ltd. Negotiations for the purchase of the goodwill of the antiquarian business by the Dutch bookseller, Menno Hertzberger, were interrupted by the German invasion of Holland.

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 given to the Library by the administrators of Pollard's estate in 1987.


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

Other Finding Aids

A full catalogue is available in the Library.

Related Material

A collection of 18th- and 19th-century autograph letters, mainly literary (now MS. Eng. lett. c. 461) was bought by the Bodleian Library from Pollard's estate in 1979.

Twelve boxes of Pollard's papers relating to the Communist Party of Great Britain were given by Pollard to John Johnson, probably in the 1930s, and are now part of the John Johnson collection in the Bodleian.

The account books of Birrell amp; Garnett were given to the British Library by Jane Norton's executors (Add. MSS. 52862-70).