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The Confidential Print comprises diplomatic dispatches and other papers that in general span from the 1830s to the 1960s. They were printed for limited circulation within the British government and were not available to the public. Sections are available online:
The Confidnetial Print originated out of a need to preserve the most important papers generated by the Foreign and Colonial Offices. These range from single-page letters or telegrams to comprehensive dispatches, investigative reports and texts of treaties. All items marked ‘Confidential Print’ were printed and circulated immediately to leading officials in the Foreign Office, to the Cabinet and to heads of British missions abroad.
This collection consists of the Confidential Print for the United States, Canada and the English-speaking Caribbean, with some coverage of Central and South America
Colonial Caribbean covers the history of the various territories under British colonial governance from 1624 to 1870. This extensive resource includes administrative documentation, trade and shipping records, minutes of council meetings, as well as details of plantation life, colonial settlement, imperial rivalries across the region, and the growing concern of absentee landlords.
For the most part these statistical records cover the years from 1839 to 1938, although some records commence from 1824 and others continue until 1950. The records for each colony are prefaced by a brief introduction to that colony. The population returns are published alongside education reports, while grants of land reveal who held the colonial wealth. Imports and exports are joined by prison records which reveal what the crimes were at that time. As these records are published together, the reader can compare the living conditions and access to services across colonies. The imperial statistics in this collection are listed by year for ease of reference
Naval office shipping lists were compiled by British naval officers in North America and the West Indies. The lists were sent periodically by colonial governors to the Board of Trade or Treasury in England. This collection contains Naval Office shipping lists compiled between 1678 and 1825. The lists cover a range of ports on the East Coast of North America. As such, they provide a comprehensive overview of the conduct of Anglo-American trade