Royal School of Mines and Royal College of Science

Archive Collection

Scope and Content

Records relating to the Royal School of Mines and Royal College of Science, 1851-1966, comprising articles on the Museum of Practical Geology; report of the Royal School of Mines Committee, 1902; a history of the Royal School of Mines, 1966; prospectuses, 1851-1907; annual reports, 1882-1906; minutes of the Council of Professors, 1851-1911; lecture accounts, 1851-1881; Normal School of Science and Royal School of Mines student fees, 1881-1883; Royal College of Science student fees register, 1900-1901; staff lists, 1903-1908; entries to lectures, 1851-1879; student entries, 1879-1881; register of passes, 1881-1893; Royal College of Science and Royal School of Mines ledgers, 1893-1896; Royal College of Science ledgers of students, 1897-1908; lecture bills, 1851-1900; inaugural addresses, 1896-1905; Royal School of Mines examination returns, 1851-1881; registers of examinations, 1883-1901; examination results, 1882-1908; apparatus accounts, 1895-1909.

Administrative / Biographical History

The Royal School of Mines was established in 1851, as the Government School of Mines and Science Applied to the Arts. The School developed from the Museum of Economic Geology, a collection of minerals, maps and mining equipment made by Sir Henry De la Beche, and opened in 1841. The Museum also provided some student places for the study of mineralogy and metallurgy. Sir Henry was the director of the Geological Survey of Great Britain, and when the collections outgrew the premises the Museum and the Survey were placed on an official footing, with Government assistance. The Museum of Practical Geology and the Government School of Mines Applied to the Arts opened in a purpose designed building in Jermyn Street in 1851. The officers of the Geological Survey became the lecturers and professors of the School of Mines. The name was changed in 1863 to the Royal School of Mines, and was moved to South Kensington in 1872.The Royal College of Chemistry was affiliated to the Government School of Mines Applied to the Arts in 1853, effectively becoming its department of Chemistry. The Royal College of Science was formed in 1881 by merging some courses of the Royal School of Mines with the teaching of other science subjects at South Kensington. It was originally named the Normal School of Science (the title was based on the Ecole Normale in Paris), but in 1890 was renamed the Royal College of Science. In 1907 the Royal School of Mines and Royal College of Science were incorporated in the Royal Charter of the Imperial College of Science and Technology. The Council of Professors was succeeded by the Imperial College Board of Studies, which was established in October 1911. In 1998 the Royal School of Mines Departments of Geology and Earth Resources Engineering became part of the T H Huxley School of Environment, Earth Sciences and Engineering, along with the Centre for Environmental Technology and the Environment Office.

Conditions Governing Access

Public

Researchers wishing to consult the Archives should first contact the College Archivist, Imperial College of Science, Technology and Medicine, Exhibition Road, London SW7 2AZ, for an appointment.

Other Finding Aids

A catalogue is available in the reading room of the College Archives.

Conditions Governing Use

A photocopying service is available at the discretion of the Archivist. Photocopies are supplied for research use only. Requests to publish original material should be submitted to the Archivist.

Custodial History

Accumulated by the Royal School of Mines, Royal College of Science and Imperial College of Science, Technology and Medicine during the course of business.

Related Material

Records of the Royal College of Chemistry (C), Royal College of Science (E), Governing Body (GB), Departments of Chemistry and Chemical Engineering (KC), Department of Geology (KG), Department of Materials (KMET), Department of Mineral Resources Engineering (KMIN), Imperial College Expansion Schemes records (I), held at Imperial College.