After a trial of several AM (Adam Matthews) Collections modules earlier in 2023, the Library has acquired two new resources – Empire Online, and Church Missionary Society Periodicals 1 & 2.
Church Missionary Society Periodicals digitises publications from the CMS, South American Missionary Society and Church of England Zenana Missionary Society, encompassing issues from 1816-2009. Thousands of pages with detailed metadata enable new research opportunities in the fields of missiology and world Christianity, as well as a unique perspective on global history and cultural encounter.
The documents include reports on missionary work, serialised journals and letters, birth, marriage, and death announcements, fiscal reports and reflections on worship, making them an extremely rich source.
Empire Online is an interactive collection of primary source documents sourced from leading archives around the world. Material in the collection spans five centuries, charting the story of the rise and fall of empires; from the explorations of Columbus, Captain Cook, and others, right through to de-colonisation in the second half of the twentieth century and debates over American Imperialism.
The wealth of documents spans five centuries and includes manuscripts, rare printed materials, letterbooks, periodicals, diaries, photographs and more.
Material in Empire Online has been sourced from a wide range of reputable institutions, with a particularly strong core of documents and images from the British Library. However, the focus is not only on the British Empire; there are a number of documents and secondary resources which relate the story of the Empire from the French, Spanish, Portuguese, and German points of view, as well as that of indigenous peoples from Africa, India and North America.
For both databases, you could start by heading to the Introduction tab for an overview on the collection, a handy tour of the website and its key features, and information on copyright:
The Documents tab allows you to browse through the full range of documents available in the collections, and includes handy filters to narrow your results Document Type (Empire Online only), Library (Empire Online only), Title (CMS Periodicals only), and Issue Date (CMS Periodicals only).
Additionally, the Advanced Search is available and allows researchers to build more complex searches:
Empire Online offers an option to view the sources in a chronological format, and the CMS Periodicals offers an option to view the sources on a map format:
Both databases offer extensive support, search tips and advice under the Help tab.
Please get in touch if you need any more support using the databases, but we hope that they will be of interest to your research!