Society Archive

An exceptional historical scientific record – available for research and exploration

Society Archive

In over 200 years from foundation to the present day, the Society has built up a wealth of comprehensive and continuous archive material.

The archives were catalogued professionally in 2015 and the Society’s archive is available to view on ArchiveSearch.

Access to all these records is welcomed for the purpose of any bona fide research. If you would like to access the archives please follow the link above to the Janus site.

Arrangement of the archives: The archives have been arranged largely by their function; constitutional records, Council records, financial records, membership records etc. Each section and sub-section is arranged broadly chronologically.

Covering dates: 1799-2014. As you can see, some papers, for example, personal papers of members, predate the foundation of the Society.

The Society archives include the following:

  • Minutes of Council and of General Meetings
  • Membership and subscription records
  • Archives relating to the various premises occupied by the Society
  • Archives relating to the Society’s publications
  • Archives of the Library and Reading Room predating 1976 (the date at which the Library, by then known as the Scientific Periodicals Library and later as the Central Science Library, became a dependent library of Cambridge University Library)
  • Archives relating to events and activities
  • Some archives of individual members, such as Sir Joseph Larmor (1857-1942, physicist and mathematician)


The Cambridge Philosophical Society Archives catalogue is available as a PDF download.