Monday, 30 March 2015

Scottish chapbooks digitised and made available online

The University of Guelph in Ontario, supported by the Scottish Studies Foundation and the Jane Grier Family Fund, has digitised a series of Scottish chapbooks from its substantial collection and placed them online at a new dedicated platform at Chapbooks, or 'cheap books', were pamphlets of eight to twenty-four pages that were created and sold in the 18th and 19th centuries.

The Scottish Chapbooks site does not appear to place the chapbooks into categories, but each has been given a series of tags (e.g. ballads, beauty, femininity, gender, Highlands, lordship, love, marriage, masculinity, songs, violence etc), with these tags acting as a means to sort them into categories. They can also be searched by keyword.

Canadian based Christine Woodcock has blogged more on the release at

Incidentally, if you find he chapbooks of interest, don't forget to visit the National Library of Scotland's Word on the Street project at, which has a series of digitised historic broadsides also available to read, covering similar territory.

(With thanks to Christine)


For details on my latest book Down and Out in Scotland: Researching Ancestral Crisis, and my other genealogy guide books please visit To commission me for genealogical research, please visit my research site at

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