Our Local History Collections relate to Wolverhampton and the wider area. Most of the material originated as part of the Local Studies collection in the City Library, but has since become an archive in its own right, and material continues to be donated and deposited on a regular basis. These are mainly original records, although we do also hold secondary source material.
The official records that we hold include the records of the City Council and its predecessors, such as Wednesfield, Tettenhall and Bilston, among others. These include council minutes and agendas, planning applications, and licensing of public houses, slaughtermen and canal boats, among others. We hold copies (usually on microfilm or microfiche) of local church registers and census returns, as well as indexes to probate records and electoral registers. We also have an extensive collection of school admission registers, log books, and other educational material.
In addition to the records of public bodies, we also hold the records of local industries, clubs and societies, and even private individuals. This includes important local businesses such as Goodyear, Sankey, the Mander Brothers and John Thompson Limited. Records for local clubs and societies include political groups like the Wolverhampton South East Conservative Association, sports clubs like the Wolverhampton & District Amateur Football League and other interest groups such as the Royal Aeronautical Society.
As well as the historic archive material, we also hold a large collection of reference books, maps and plans, which help to complement the story of the local history of the area. Some of this material is available for free access in the Archives searchroom, while the remainder is available on request. We hold over 30,000 photographs of the local area, many of which have been digitised and can be viewed on this website. We also hold a complete collection of microfilms of the main local newspapers, the Wolverhampton Chronicle, and the Express and Star. Our museum collections hold items related to the history and industry of Wolverhampton including locks, keys and bicycles.
You can find out more about works in the local history collections by…
- … trying a simple search using the search box at the top of the page – just put one or more words, key phrases or artist names into the search box then click on the magnifying glass symbol to run your search
- … clicking on one of the images below: