History of Medicine Library

Our History of Medicine Library, located at our head office in Sydney, has a leading collection of medical history items from Australasia and around the world.

The College established the Library in 1938 as a clinical library. The focus of the library changed to medical history in the mid 1950s. The Library continues to grow through the contributions of our College members.

The Library holds over 30,000 medical history items, including:

  • monographs
  • journals
  • artworks
  • manuscripts – war diaries, private physician papers
  • photographs – Fellows, historical medical sites
  • historical medical pamphlets
  • an early medicine catalogue
  • antique medical instruments

Aotearoa New Zealand collection

Our Aotearoa New Zealand collection is held at the Ernest and Marion Davis Library which is located at Auckland Hospital. It holds 1001 titles and a small number of artefacts on behalf of the College.

The most significant title, Booke of soveraigne medecines against the most common and known deseases of man and women is held for safekeeping at the National Library of New Zealand.

Many of the unique collections have been recorded in our online library catalogue.

Search catalogue


Using the library

Our Library is closed until further notice due to COVID-19. Contact us for specific requests during this time.

Help with your search

Our Librarian can assist you in your search through our print and electronic resources as well as provide advice on where to source other information. Contact the Library to discuss your enquiry.

Borrow from our collection

Fellows and trainees can borrow items directly from the History of Medicine Library.

Members of the public are also able to borrow items through the inter-library loans system. Enquire at your local library about the inter-library loans process.

Rare materials dated before the 1900s are generally not for loan. These items can be viewed and photocopied in-person at the Library.

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