The Folger Shakespeare Library Finding Aid Database provides access to a growing group of online finding aids for manuscript, graphic, archival and other collections at the Folger Shakespeare Library. These finding aids provide detailed descriptions about the creation, historical context, arrangement, and content of collections as well as information necessary for users to identify and request the portions relevant to their research. Online finding aids are accessible from collection level records in Hamnet, a browsable list, or by using the following search tool. For more on research in the Folger manuscript collection, consult Finding manuscripts at the Folger: Frequently asked questions.
Help and Notes
Please note that not all collections have online finding aids. If you are beginning your search, we recommend looking in HAMNET first.
Catalog records may reference typescript inventories for certain collections; please consult reading room staff for access.
In addition, please note that the Folger Shakespeare Library is in the process of converting and transferring old online finding aids to this database. Finding aids in the process of being upgraded are noted as "(Legacy)" in the List of Finding Aids.
New and converted electronic finding aids will be added on a regular basis.
- The Anywhere option searches the entire text of the finding aid and is the broadest type of search.
- The Scope and Content option searches text only within the collection scope and content note of a finding aid. This note provides a summary statement of the intellectual content of a collection.
- The Index terms option restricts the search to terms that have been specifically tagged in the “index terms” section using authorized forms from various thesauri. These terms include personal, corporate, and geographic names, topical subject terms, and genre terms. These terms represent only those which the cataloger deemed most significant for a particular collection. Not all names or subjects will be searchable in their authorized form.
- The Item Description option searches only the lower-level series and item-level contents of a finding aid and does not search the higher level description of the collection as a whole.
- The Names option searches for all personal and corporate names that have been explicitly tagged throughout the body of the finding aid. Tagged names generally appear in direct order.
Search results will point to the finding aid and attempt to link to the relevant section. Please use the find option (Ctrl-F) in your browser to locate keywords.
- Bacon, Delia Salter, Papers of, 1820-1952 (bulk 1827-1859): Folger MS Y.c.2599 (1-323) (323 items)
- Bacon, Nathaniel, Papers of, 1574-1650 (bulk 1590-1622): Folger MS X.d.502 (1-51) (51 items)
- Bacon-Townshend Collection, 1550-1640: Folger MS L.d.1-1036 (1036 items)
- Bagot Family Papers, 1428-1671 (bulk 1557-1671): Folger MS L.a.1-1076 (1076 items)
- Bennet, Robert, Papers of, 1603-1678 (bulk 1642-1663): Folger MS X.d.483 (1-209) (209 items)
- Booth family of Twemlow, Letters, 1628-1689: Folger MS F.c.6-34 (28 items)
- Booth, Edwin, Letters to various recipients, 1858-1893: Folger MS Y.c.215 (1-534) (534 items)
- Burton, Drue, Collection of state papers and other materials, ca. 1607-ca. 1625: Folger MS.G.b.10 (1 v. (136 leaves))
- Cavendish-Talbot Family, Papers of the, 1333-1705 (bulk 1548-1676): Folger MS X.d.428 (1-203) (203 items)
- Collier, John Payne Collection of letters and papers removed from The history of English dramatic poetry to the time of Shakespeare, and Annals of the stage of the restoration by J.P. Collier, 19th century: Folger MS W.b.502-503 (152 items)
- Collier, John Payne Collection of letters and papers, removed from An old manâ€™s diary [manuscript], compiled ca. 1875, 1647-1875 (bulk 1830-1875): Folger MS Y.d.341 (1-172) (172 items)
- Collier, John Payne copies of manuscripts and printed material, ca. 1400-ca. 1700, ca. 1825-1861: Folger MS Y.d.582 (48 items)
- Collier, John Payne, Autograph letters signed and initialled to various recipients, 1824-1882: Folger MS Y.c.1055 (1-224) (224 items)
- Collier, John Payne, Letters from various correspondents, 1799-1884: Folger MS Y.d.6 (1-231) (231 items)
- Daly, Augustin, 1838-1899. Collection of letters and papers (Legacy): Y.c.2602-3099, Y.c.4000-5378 (33 boxes)
- De Conquestu Angliae per Hispanos, 1570-1604 (bulk 1580s): Folger MS G.b.5 (1 volume)
- Dering family, Papers of the, ca. 1450-ca. 1680: Folger MS X.d.531 (1-21) (21 items)
- Drury Lane and Covent Garden Theatres, records of, 1714-1880: various shelfmarks (282 items)
- England and Wales, Lord Chamberlain of the Royal Household, warrants and orders to Master of the Great Wardrobe, 1669, 1676-1677: Folger MS.X.d.679.(1-27) (27 items)
- Este and Farnese families, Collection of letters, 1592-1805: Folger MS X.d.394 (1-30) (30 items)
- Ferrers Family of Tamworth Castle, Papers of, 1371-1806 (bulk 16th - 17th century) : Folger MS L.e.1-1200; X.d.685 (1-25) (1225 items)
- Garrick, David, Playbills relating to the theatrical career (Legacy): multiple shelfmarks, listed individually (552 items)
- German Authors, Letters and Papers by (Legacy): Refer to each entry for specific citation. (approximately 175 items)
- Goodricke Family of Ribston Hall, Nidderdale, Yorkshire, Papers of, 1639?-1689: Folger MS V.b.333 (1-39) (1 volume)
- Halliwell-Phillipps, J.O., Scrapboxes of, 19th century: Folger MS Y.d.1119-1414 (43 boxes)
- Helsby, Mary Hatton, Letters to various recipients, 1651-1668: Folger MS X.d.493 (1-23) (23 items)
- Henderson, William, Manuscripts in the Collection of Playbills, etc., ca. 1750-1889 (bulk 1801-1889): various shelfmarks (ca. 600 items)
- Hodges, C. Walter, Collection of Elizabethan and Other Theatre Drawings, 1933-1990: Folger ART Box H688 (890 items)
- Kean, Charles, Letters of, 1828-1866: Folger MS Y.c.393 (1-299) (299 items)
- Leo, Friedrich August, 1820-1898. Letters mostly to him from various people (Legacy): Y.c.1505-1631; Y.c.301 (3). Refer to each entry for specific citation. (3 boxes (650 items))
- Loseley Collection (Legacy): Folger MSS L.b.1-712 (22 boxes (712 items))
- Nichols Family Papers Relating to The gentleman's magazine, 1778 to 1873: Folger MS Y.d.24 (5952 items)
- North Family Collection of Letters and Papers relating to Tate Wilkinson, Mrs. Siddons, and the North family of York, 1732-1955: Folger MS Y.d.618 (1-38) (38 items)
- Political and Parlimentary Documents, Collection of, compiled circa 1550-circa 1650: Folger MS V.b.303 (1 volume)
- Privy Council, Letters from, 1545-1621: Folger MS X.d.30 (1-58) (58 items)
- Rattray Family of Craighall, Papers of the, 1593-1699: Folger MS X.c.61 (1-194) (194 items)
- Rich family, papers of, 1485-ca. 1820 (bulk 1649-1715): Folger MS X.d.451 (1-231) (231 items)
- Siddons, Sarah, Letters to various recipients, 1783-1820: Folger MS Y.c.432 (1-26) (26 items)
- Smith, Richard, Papers of, ca. 1633-ca. 1670: Folger MS.V.a.510 (1 box)
- Stratford and Warwickshire References in the Art, Manuscript, and Scrapbook Collections (Legacy): various manuscript shelfmarks (149 manuscripts/scrapbooks spanning the Folger collection)
- Strozzi Family, Manuscripts of the, 17th and 18th century: Folger MS W.b.132 (1-199, 169a) (200 volumes)
- Tonson, Jacob, Papers of, 1685-1891 (bulk 1685-1737): Folger MS C.c.1 (1-83) (83 items)
- Walters, John Cuming, Papers of, ca. 1898-1932: Folger MS Y.d.1417 (1-2011) (2011 items)
- Williams, E., watermark collection, including the papers of the Hale family of King's Walden and other papers, ca. 1570-1699: Folger MS.L.f.1-1058 (1058 items)
- Winter, William, Letters to Elsie Leslie, 1898-1916 (bulk 1910-1915): Folger MS Y.c.1825 (1-221) (6 boxes)
- Winter, William, Letters to various recipients, 1864-1917: Folger MS Y.c.573 (1-114) (114 items)
- Winter, William, Robert Young collection relating to, ca. 1745-2005 (bulk 1880-1906): various shelfmarks (47 boxes)
- Hamnet: Folger Library Catalog
- Folger Digital Image Collection
- Folger Microfilms Database: Microfilm of Original Materials Owned by the Folger Library
- Hand-List of Microfilm and Selected Microfiche Sets available at the Folger Shakespeare Library [PDF]
- Maps: London Maps in the Collection of the Folger Shakespeare Library. Various shelfmarks [PDF]
- Maps: List of British County Atlases at the Folger Shakespeare Library. Various shelfmarks [PDF]
- Maps: Folger Shakespeare Library's Collection of Warwickshire County Maps. Various shelfmarks [PDF]
- Papers of Henry and Emily Folger [PDF]
The banner image reproduces a portion of Richard Stonley's diary entry for Tuesday June 12, 1593, containing the first recorded purchase of Shakespeare's first publication, Venus and Adonis, made less than two months after the poem was licensed to be printed. Stonley also purchased John Eliot's The Survey, or Topographical Description of France. Total cost: twelve pence.