Richard Cyriax collection

Scope and Content

The collection comprises of correspondence by Cyriax and papers regarding the British Naval Northwest Passage Expedition, 1845-1848 (leader Sir John Franklin)

Administrative / Biographical History

Richard Julius Cyriax was born in 1885 in Canonbury. He was educated at University College School, University College London and St Mary's Hospital, graduating in 1908 and qualifying as a member of the Royal College of Surgeons and licentiate of the Royal College of Physicians with the department of Public Health in 1917. In 1920, he entered the public health service as assistant tuberculosis officer for the Warwickshire and Coventry Joint Committee for Tuberculosis in Nuneaton, later moving to Leamington Spa. Interested from an early age in the ill-fated British Naval Northwest Passage Expedition, 1845-1848 (leader Sir John Franklin), Cyriax became a leading authority on the subject, publishing his book Sir John Franklin's last expedition; a chapter in the history of the Royal Navy in 1939. Retiring as tuberculosis officer of the South Warwickshire Hospital Group in 1951, he died on 16 January 1967 at Leamington Spa.


The collection is arranged as deposited at the Institute.

Access Information

By appointment.

Some materials deposited at the Institute are NOT owned by the Institute. In such cases the archivist will advise about any requirements imposed by the owner. These may include seeking permission to read, extended closure, or other specific conditions.


Anyone wishing to consult material should ensure they note the entire MS reference and the name of the originator.

The term holograph is used when the item is wholly in the handwriting of the author. The term autograph is used when the author has signed the item.

Descriptions compiled by N. Boneham, Assistant Archivist with assistance from R. Stancombe and reference to Arctic, exploration and development c500 BC to 1915, an encyclopaedia by Clive Holland Garland Publishing, London (1994) and Exploring Polar Frontiers, a historical encyclopaedia by William Mills San Diego and Oxford, 2003 and 'Richard Julius Cyriax' by A G E Jones in The Geographical Journal volume 133 part 2 (1967) p281-282

Other Finding Aids

Clive Holland Manuscripts in the Scott Polar Research Institute, Cambridge, England - a catalogue, Garland Publishing New York and London (1982) ISBN 0824093941.

Additional finding aids are available at the Institute.

Conditions Governing Use

Copying material by photography, electrostat, or scanning device by readers is prohibited. The Institute may be able to provide copies of some documents on request for lodgement in publicly available repositories. This is subject to conservation requirements, copyright law, and payment of fees.

Copyright restrictions apply to most material. The copyright may lie outside the Institute and, if so, it is necessary for the reader to seek appropriate permission to consult, copy, or publish any such material. (The Institute does not seek this permission on behalf of readers). Written permission to publish material subject to the Institute's copyright must be obtained from the Director. Details of conditions and fees may be had from the Archivist.


Further accessions possible