Biographies, memoirs and diaries
A selection of biographical works and memoirs from the seventeenth to the nineteenth centuries, detailing the lives of contemporary men and women. These works may offer an insight into perceptions of gender and its role in society over time.
Alcock, Thomas, Some memoirs of the life of Dr. Nathan Alcock, lately deceased, (London, 1780). Special Collections: Salisbury, WG30(1780).
Anderson, James. Ladies of the Reformation: memoirs of distinguished female characters, belonging to the period of the Reformation in the sixteenth century: England, Scotland and the Netherlands. London: Blackie & Son, 1858. se BR317.A6
Arnaud, Raoul; Noël Fleming. In the shadows: three heroines of the revolution. London: J. Hamilton, 1927?. se DC145.A7
Baxter, Richard (ed.), Memoirs of Margaret Baxter: daughter of Francis Charlton and wife of Richard Baxter : with some account of her mother, Mrs. Hanmer, including a true delineation of her character, (London, 1826). Special Collections: Salisbury, WG33.M.
Boone, Martha. Selections from the papers of Martha Boone, late of Birmingham, found after her decease. To which is prefixed a brief memoir. London: Printed by Bensley and Son, 1817. WG37(1817)
Cheshire biography: lives and interesting anecdotes of the most eminent characters, born in the county and city of Chester, (Chester, 1796). Special Collections: Salisbury, WG30(1796).
Clarke, Samuel, The lives of sundry eminent persons in this later age: In two parts, I. Of divines. II. Of nobility and gentry of both sexes, (London, 1683). Special Collections: Cardiff Rare Books Collection: Early English Folios, CT781.C5.
Clarke, Thomas Grey, A memoir of Anna Maria Clarke, wife of the Rev. Thomas Clarke... (London, 1853). Special Collections: Salisbury, WG36.4.1301
Cofiant am Ann Dafis, o Garth-y-Dwrf-Bach, Glyndyfrdwy, Meirion. Llanrwst: argraffwyd gan John Jones, 1835. WG37(1835)
Coke, Thomas, The character and death of Mrs. Hester Ann Rogers: set forth in a sermon preached on the occasion in Spitalfields Chapel, London, on Sunday, Oct. 26, 1794, (London, 1822). Special Collections: Salisbury, WG37(1822).
Contemporary portraits: men and women of South Wales and Monmouthshire; Newport section, (Cardiff, Western Mail Ltd. 1897). Special Collections – Salisbury, Folio WG42.C
Contemporary portraits: men and women of South Wales and Monmouthshire; Cardiff section, (Cardiff : Western Mail Ltd. 1896). Special Collections: Salisbury, Folio WG42.C
Curll, Edmund, Faithful memoirs of the life, amours and performances, of...Mrs. Anne Oldfield : interspersed with several other dramatical memoirs, (London, 1731). Special Collections: Salisbury, WG30(1731).
Davies, Thomas, Memoirs of the life of David Garrick, Esq : interspersed with characters and anecdotes of his theatrical contemporaries. The whole forming a history of the stage, which includes a period of thirty-six years, (London, 1780). Special Collections: Salisbury, WG30(1780).
Elwood, Anne Katharine Curteis. Memoirs of the literary ladies of England: from the commencement of the last century. London: Henry Colburn, 1843. PR115.E5.
Jones, Emyr Wyn. Enid Wyn Jones, 1909-1967: in memoriam. Liverpool: Emyr Wyn Jones, 1968. WG39.3.0705
Kenning, Elizabeth. Memoir of Elizabeth Kenning, with extracts from her remains. Liverpool Female Penitentiary. Ladies' Committee. Liverpool: D. Marples, 1829. WG36.2.1330
Lady's Who's Who: Who's Who for British Women, a list of names of those women with play a prominent part in society, art, the professions, business, etc. 1938-39. Journals
Ley, John. A patterne of pietie: or The religious life and death of that grave and gracious matron, Mrs. Jane Ratcliffe, widow and citizen of Chester; of whom the discourse is framed and applied so as the commemoration of the dead may best serve to the edification of the living, whether men or women, whereof part was preached, and the whole written. London: Printed by Felix Kingston for Robert Bostocke, 1640. WG30(1640)
Mangin, Edward. Piozziana: or, Recollections of the late Mrs. Piozzi, with remarks. London: Edward Moxon, 1833. WG16.95.P
Morgan, Edward, The Clergyman's wife: a memoir of the late Mrs. Morgan of Syston, (Carnarvon, 1854). Special Collections: Salisbury, WG37(1854)
Myers, Frederic, Lectures on great men, (London, 1856). Special Collections: Reference, se CT104.M9.
Piozzi, Hester Lynch. Autobiography, letters and literary remains of Mrs. Piozzi (Thrale) 1741-1821. London: Longman, Green, Longman, and Roberts, 1861. WG36.4.1213
Plarr, Victor. Men and women of the time: a dictionary of contemporaries. London: George Routledge & Sons Ltd., 1899. CT103.M3
Roberts, John (ed.), Lizzie Milnes a memoir of a beloved wife, with selections from her letters, poetry, & scripture thoughts, (Edinburgh, 1876). Special Collections: Humanities microfilm 386.
Robert, Prior of Shrewsbury, The admirable life of Saint Wenefride virgin, martyr, abbesse, (St. Omer, 1635). Special Collections: Salisbury, WG30(1635).
Rogers, Hester Ann. Extracts from the journal of Mrs. Hester Ann Rogers, 1756-1794. London: J. Rogers, 1818. WG5.4.R
Smollett, Tobias, The memoirs of a lady of quality (Frances Anne Vane Vane Viscountess, 1713-1788),  (London, Peter Davies, 1925). Special Collections. Cardiff Rare Books Collection: Private Presses, Quartos, PR3694.M3
Statham, John, Memoir of Louisa Maria Statham, wife of the Rev. John Statham, Baptist Minister, Reading, (London, 1842). Special Collections: Salisbury, WG5.4.S.
Warren, Samuel. Memoirs and select letters of Mrs. Anne Warren: with biographical sketches of her family. London: Printed for the author, sold by John Mason, 1832. WG36.4.259
Welsford, Enid E. H. Nora K. Chadwick, 1891-1972: in memoriam. Cambridge: printed by Coulson's, 1973. WG39.3.0704
Williams, J. B. (John Bickerton); William Jay. Memoirs of the life and character of Mrs. Sarah Savage, eldest daughter of the Reverend Philip Henry, A.M. London: printed for Ogles, Duncan, and Cochran ... by W. Clowes, 1819. WG16.95.S
Williams, Jane. The literary women of England: including a biographical epitome of all the most eminent to the year 1700; and sketches of the poetesses to the year 1850; with extracts from their works, and critical remarks. London: Saunders, Otley, 1861. WG36.5.596
Priscilla Scott-Ellis, 1937-1941
Diaries of the Hon. Priscilla Scott-Ellis (b.1916), daughter of Thomas, 8th Lord Howard de Walden, 1937-1941. 9 vols. In 1937, Priscilla Scott-Ellis, a member of minor aristocracy, travelled to Spain to support the Nationalist Army fighting the Popular Front government. She trained in first aid and carried out nursing duties at the front-line. For women’s history researchers, the diaries provide a rare insight into the daily life of a nurse in the Spanish Civil War. Browse the online catalogue.
Mass Observation Archive, 1937-1950
Digital subscription available to staff and students of Cardiff University.
Mass Observation was a social research organisation which collected diaries and surveys written by volunteers, and produced reports summarising the results of their research activities. They attempted to document and examine public opinion on a wide range of issues. The diaries gave many women a unique opportunity to record their thoughts and opinions on public record, making this resource particularly useful for students of social and cultural history from a gendered perspective. The TV film Housewife, 49 was written about one of the contributors, tracing her path from depressed, introverted housewife to active member of the community as a result of her war-work. We hold records from 1937-1950, though Mass Observation is still active today.
The collection can be browsed chronologically, or a full subject index is available, recording everyday people's views on consumer goods, crime, education, entertainment, family, health, housing, income, marriage, morale, news, propaganda, women, and work.