Accessing The Collection

The RSGS’s collection is now more accessible than ever before.  Many items have already been catalogued onto databases which you can search online, and most items can be seen in either Perth or Glasgow, although you may need to give advanced notice.

Andersonian Library, Glasgow

Most of the RSGS’s books and journals are deposited with the University of Strathclyde’s Andersonian Library.  They are catalogued in the Library’s online database, and are available for public reference, with free access for RSGS members.

RSGS HQ and Fair Maid’s House, Perth

Polar books and journals are held at the RSGS’s headquarters in Perth.  Some books and journals of more general interest, including travel books, biographies, and bound copies of the Scottish Geographical Journal, are available for reference in the Explorers’ Room of our visitor and education centre in the Fair Maid’s House.  All other items, including maps, photographs, artefacts and archives, are housed in the Fair Maid’s House.

Enquiry Service

RSGS - Enquiry ServiceDue to limitations of space and money, only a small part of the collection is on public display at any time.  However, a small team of expert volunteers is available on a restricted basis to help with enquiries about and access to specific items: please contact us and we will do what we can to help.  Please be aware that it can take more than a week to respond to enquiries, and it will take longer to arrange a special visit.  There may be a small charge for some enquiry services (based on time and, if appropriate, reproduction and copyright fees), which we will tell you about in advance.

Maps and Images Database (MID)

A catalogue of around 70,000 maps, books, images and other items is available on our Maps and Images Database.  This facility allows you to search for items by geographical location, title, author, publisher, date, etc, and includes thumbnail images of around 21,500 photographs.  More items are being listed daily, so please visit again.

RSGS - CollectionsRSGS Image Rights

Largely thanks to the HLF-funded Images for All project, we now have high-resolution digital scans of around 21,500 images (all RSGS copyright).  For any of these images, we can supply good-quality paper prints or electronic files with specific reproduction rights.  Please contact us with details of your project to enquire about costs, terms and conditions.