Society of Genealogists Library

Society of Genealogists Library
14 Charterhouse Buildings, Goswell Road, London  EC1M 7BA

(020) 7702 5485
(020) 7250 1800


At the end of a cul-de-sac at the junction of Clerkenwell Road and Goswell Road, 7-10 minutes walk north of Barbican underground or 10 minutes walk north-east of Farringdon Thameslink/Underground station. Buses 4, 55, 56, 153 & 243 stop nearby.

Hours of opening:

Tues, Wed & Sat 1000 - 1800
Thursday 1000 - 2000
Closed Mondays and Fridays.
Also closed for stocktaking during the first week of January each year. Please check web site for up-to-date information.


Free access for members. Open to non-members on payment of fees (see web site for details). Disabled access toilet and lift to all floors which will take a small wheelchair.

Reader places:

100 plus

Librarians in charge:

Tim Lawrence, BA Hons

Genealogical enquiries to the Genealogy Officer:

Miss Else Churchill, BA, Dip Lib

Staff availability:

During opening hours


All books, CD-ROMS, films, fiche, audio and video cassettes, maps, and periodicals on in-house computer catalogue (EOS.web Enterprise software) and on the Internet at Non book materials (Document Collections, pedigree rolls etc.) indexed by card catalogue and hard copy listings.

Collection level descriptions for smaller collections are at




126,000 plus items including 10,000 plus films (mainly of original materials). Main coverage is of genealogy and family history, chiefly of Britain and the British diaspora, but including something for most countries worldwide. Sources include C of E and nonconformist register copies, monumental inscriptions, census returns and indexes, directories, poll books, will abstracts and indexes. Also topography, biography, heraldry, history (general, social, economic and local), demography, palaeography, emigration and immigration etc. Many county record and historical society publications and including some archaeological and local history society journals. Family history journals are exchanged with most English speaking societies worldwide and the collection includes some foreign language periodicals (especially French and German).

Special collections:

Apprentices (and their masters) of Great Britain 1710-1774 - based on IR 1 at the National Archives, Bank of England will extracts (government stock transfers) 1717-1845 (plus miscellaneous vols. including Wellington (1853 P‑Z) & Dickens (1870 A‑F)), Bernau index - chiefly National Archives sources before 1800, Boyd’s Inhabitants of London - 14th - 19th centuries but chiefly 16th and 17th, Boyd’s London burials 1538-c. 1853 - adult male burials in the London area, Boyd’s marriage index 1538-1837 (England), Civil Service irreplaceable evidences of age c. 1855-1939, Great Card Index - genealogical and biographical sources, Great Western Railway probate (stock transfer) registers 1835-1932, Teachers’ Registration Council registers 1902-48, Trinity House petitions1787-1854 (film copy), Vicar General and Faculty Office marriage allegations up to 1850 (film copies) etc.

Additional facilities:

Common Room with drinks vending machine, Lecture Room (available for hire), Photocopiers, film and fiche readers and printers, CD computers, Internet suite. Laptops and photography by permission. The Genealogy Officer will conduct short (half hour) searches in indexed sources in the Society’s collections for a standard fee (see web site for details). The Society runs lectures, courses and off-site visits throughout the year. Publications of the Society (available on site or via the web site) cover a range of material including the National Index of Parish Registers series, the My ancestors were ... Series (e.g. Jewish, Merchant Seamen, Londoners etc.), the City of London Livery Company Apprentice indexes, County and country source guides to holdings in the Library etc.