Legacies of Enslavement Inquiry and Exhibition at Queens’ College, Cambridge


  • Tim Eggington Queen's College, University of Oxford, UK


enslavement, history, exhibitions, theological libraries


The University of Cambridge Legacies of Enslavement inquiry was instigated in 2019, in the wake of growing public interest in the issue of British universities’ historical links to enslavement. Yet this story of enslavement could not be told without input from the university’s colleges. It was partly with that in mind that a subsequent Queens’ Governing Body meeting invited the college’s librarian and historians to conduct an inquiry into Queens’ College’s legacies of enslavement.
Following much discussion between students and fellows, it was agreed that all interested Queens’ members would participate in a wide-ranging project to examine the biographies of as many eighteenth- and nineteenth-century Queens’ members as possible. Given that it was not until the lockdown in March 2020 that work began, the library team drew up guidelines so that students, fellows, and librarians could do the research from home. Researchers picked names from the Cambridge Alumni Database, researched them on UCL’s Legacies of British Slavery database, and many other similar resources, and entered their findings onto a shared Google Docs spreadsheet. By Autumn 2020, a coherent picture was emerging, and the library pressed ahead with its planned ‘Legacies of Enslavement’ exhibition, whilst continuing with archival and biographical enslavement research.




How to Cite

Eggington, T. (2023). Legacies of Enslavement Inquiry and Exhibition at Queens’ College, Cambridge. BETH Bulletin: European Theological Librarianship, 1(1), 58–64. Retrieved from https://bethbulletin.eu/ojs/index.php/bethyb/article/view/1034