On trial: British Online Archives collections

Did you know the Library currently has trial access to a number of databases from British Online Archives?

British Online Archives are one of the U.K.’s leading academic publishers. Their goal is to provide students and researchers with access to unique collections of primary source documents.  Their databases cover 1,000 years of world history, from politics and warfare to slavery and medicine.

At the Library we currently have trial access to 7 databases from BOA. All can be accessed from the E-resources Trials page:

Britannia and Eve, 1926-1957
Trial ends: 3rd March 2023

Screenshot of homepage from 'Britannia and Eve, 1926-1957'.

Formed in 1929 and owned by the Illustrated London News, this magazine marketed itself to a predominantly female readership, and especially to wealthy and conservative women. It maintained an emphasis on fashion, beauty and the home, and featured contributions from some of the most influential female artists and writers of the time. It became well known for the artistry of its illustrations and for its wide-ranging coverage. Given its popularity, eclecticism and influence, it provides critical insights into the history of fashion, gender history and British print culture.

NB: The Library already has access to the Illustrated London News archive. Access via Databases A-Z.

London Life, 1965-1966
Trial ends: 3rd March 2023

Launched in 1965, as a reincarnation of The Tatler, this title reflected all aspects of the life of London, conveying the spirit of the “swinging sixties”. It covered a wide range of topics from music, film, sexuality and gender, and the thriving nightlife of London’s west end. At the same time it captured the increasingly cosmopolitan and diverse nature of British society.

Screenshot of homepage from 'The Sketch, 1893-1958'.The Sketch, 1893-1958
Trial ends: 3rd March 2023

The Sketch began publication in 1893 as a light-hearted sister paper to The Illustrated London News and described itself as ‘A Journal of Art and Actuality’. It was published weekly and was for ‘the cultivated people who in their leisure moments look for light reading and amusing pictures, imbued with a high artistic value’. The Sketch was the first newspaper to publish the short stories of Agatha Christie, who wrote 49 stories for the paper between 1923 and 1924.

NB: The Library already has access to the Illustrated London News archive. Access via Databases A-Z.

The Tatler, 1901-1965
Trial ends: 3rd March 2023

From 1901 to 1968 The Tatler was one of various publications owned by the Illustrated London News. It catered to an affluent and traditionalist audience, keeping them informed about the latest developments in British High Society. Focusing mainly on fashion, theatre and sports, The Tatler regaled readers with news and gossip about Britain’s most prominent socialites, including aristocrats, athletes and actors. This collection yields valuable source material for researchers of British society in the early to mid-twentieth century, and of Britain’s wealthy and powerful elite.

NB: The Library already has access to the Illustrated London News archive. Access via Databases A-Z.

Colonial Law in Africa, 1808-1919
Trial ends 15th March 2023

Screenshot of homepage of Colonial Law in Africa, 1808-1919

This collection covers the African Government Gazettes, 1808-1919, with each item containing colonial laws for the year they were published. The legal records also include property for sale, probate records and bankruptcy notices. The items in this collection cover the Napoleonic Wars, the Boer War and the First World War. They also cover the abolition of the legal status of slavery. This is the first part of the three part series ‘Colonial Law in Africa’.

NB: The Library already has access to the third part in this series, Colonial Law in Africa, 1946-1966. Access via Databases A-Z.

Liverpool Shipping Records: Imports and Exports, 1820-1900 – Part 1
Trial ends: 15th March 2023

This collection contains bills of entry derived from official sources, namely the reports and manifests of ships that docked in the port of Liverpool between 1820 and 1860. These bills are divided into two categories. The first contains details of imports and the second records exports. This collection provides an overview of the emergence of Liverpool as a prominent maritime centre. It also provides an insight into shifting patterns of global trade during the 19th century.

South Africa in Records from Colonial Missionaries, 1819-1900
Trial ends: 15th March 2023

South Africa in Records from Colonial Missionaries, 1819-1900 The United Society Partners in Gospel (USPG) is a UK-based Anglican missionary organisation operating worldwide. During the 18th, 19th, and early-20th centuries, the USPG went by the name of the Society for the Propagation of the Gospel in Foreign Parts (SPG). This collection includes letters and supplementary material compiled by its South African branch during the period 1820-1900. Includes records for: Capetown, Grahamstown, Natal, Kaffaria, Zululand.

You can access all the above databases via the E-resources trials page.
Access is available on and off-campus.
Feedback welcome.

Access is only available to current students and staff at the University of Edinburgh.

Please note, trial access to a resource is an opportunity for our staff and students to try a resource out and give feedback on its quality and usefulness. However, if we trial a resource this is not an indication that we plan to or will be able to purchase or subscribe to the resource in the near future.

Caroline Stirling – Academic Support Librarian for History, Classics and Archaeology