Victorian Resources Online:
An Annotated List of Scholarly Websites
This index includes lengthy bibliographies as well as small projects. The undertakings of large research institutions are listed side-by-side with the efforts of individual scholars. I have not, for the most part, catalogued individual electronic texts, as several of the sites listed below do a fine job of providing author-listings. While a few of the following Web pages are not strictly scholarly, I have listed them because they contain online resources such as image collections which can be of great convenience to Victorianists. I have also noted their limitations.
Please note, however, that information and links are certainly out of date as this list has not been actively maintained since 2000. It remains here for historical purposes.
Bibliographies and Guides Literature and the Press Art and Architecture Society and Social Issues Education, Medicine, Theatre and Religion
Bibliographies and Guides:
The Victoria Research Web: Patrick Leary, founder of the VICTORIA discussion list, has assembled a thoughtful collection of links to aid researchers. Here you'll find information about libraries and archives, journals and organizations, courses and online projects. The VRW and searchable VICTORIA archives should be your first stop on the Web, particularly if you are new to online research.
Mitsuharu Matsuoka's Victorian Web Sites provides an alphabetized list of nearly 300 sites, most dealing with individual Victorian authors. His 19th-Century British and Irish Authors also lists web sites and electronic texts. Many of these are of middling quality and should not be used when scholarly editions are available.
The Victorian section of Jack Lynch's Literary Resources on the Net also contains many links to author sites and electronic texts, as well as to calls for papers.
Alan Liu's interdisciplinary Voice of the Shuttle offers a large selection of links in its Victorian Literature section. Again, most of these are to electronic texts. The chief virtue of Voice of the Shuttle is its range.
The Northeast Victorian Studies Association offers a similar index of Victorian web sites. However, this page only lists individual e-texts when a "reasonably complete" author site is not available.
The study section of a commercial site, victoriana.com, also offers a link list. Victoriana.com is also interesting as an example of the growing 19th-century nostalgia industry.Brown University sponsors George Landow's encyclopedia of Victorian culture. The Victorian Web is a collaborative project which provides brief treatments of many aspects of Victorianism. It is best used as a teeaching tool or as a quick introduction to unfamiliar aspects of ninteenth-century studies.
Michael Levenson (UVa) and David Trotter (UCL) direct Monuments and Dust: The Culture of Victorian London, which aims to assemble "a complex visual, textual, and statistical representation of Victorian London." The project is in its infancy, but already features population and mortality data sets that can be configured into graphs on the fly and a virtual-reality model of the Crystal Palace.Literature and the Press:
New Books in 19th-Century Studies "offers complete publication information for scholarly works on the British Romantic and Victorian periods." It is housed at the University of Southern California.
The LITIR Database on Victorian Studies is an online bibliography of books and articles on the period. Its beta-test period is now over, and the site requires registration.
Spartacus Educational has assembled an Encyclopedia of British History, 1700-1950, which contains several articles relevant to Victorian studies. While the site is useful, students should be aware that some scholars have identified errors of fact in its articles.
Compiled by a commercial genealogy research company, GenDocs, Online Victorian London Research Aids includes indices of streets, churches, organizations, lodging and public houses, police divisions, cemeteries, and other map- and census-based data.
The Public Record Office of the National Archives offers extensive on-line materials. Its Finding Aids page includes links to a searchable database and a collection of useful informational leaflets.
R. J. Olney's helpful 1995 booklet, Manuscript Sources for British History: Their Nature, Location and Use, is now online.
Simon Wilson's UK Archival Repositories on the Internet offers an annotated list of archives with web pages.
The HISTORY web site was "established in 1993 with the aim of promoting the use of electronic networks by historians and history students and providing easy access to on-line resources." It includes a searchable list of resources.
See also Surveys of Historical Manuscripts in the United Kingdom from the Historical Manuscripts Commission. These references to print resources are organized by topic as well as chronologically and geographically.
Chadwyck-Healey's The Nineteenth Century is a searchable catalogue of over 22,000 19th-century works available, for a price, on microfiche.
The History Data Service at the University of Essex has digitized the 1881 Census.
The Database of Irish Historical Statistics project at Queen's University, Belfast, has made available all Irish census data from 1821 to 1971.
The Victorian Women Writers Project is a well-organized effort, under the general editorship of Perry Willett, to encode 19th-century texts by women in SGML (Standard Generalized Markup Language).
Doing Research in Victorian Fiction: Historical, Critical, and Reference Sources by Sally Mitchell of Temple University, is an extensive bibliography with annotated entries. It's useful far beyond the field of fiction.
Aids to Research in British Victorian Periodical Literature: A Selected Bibliography by Rosemary VanArsdel of the University of Puget Sound, lists general references, biographical sources, histories of individual periodicals, and a few critical commentaries.
Students interested in bibliography and textual criticism should consult SHARP Web, the page of the Society for the History of Authorship, Reading, and Publishing. It lists enormously useful links and hosts a searchable archive of SHARP-L, the organization's discussion list.
Victorian Authorship (Paul Amore, Texas Christian University) See especially the bibliography and chronology sections.
The Libraries and Archives Research Guide Online (LARGO) lists information about London repositories. It is still under construction, but promises to be useful.
Sources for British Newspaper History is a National Register of Archives (NRA) guide.
The Concise History of the British Newspaper since 1620 is an historical guide written by Christopher Skelton-Foord of the British Library
Chadwyck-Healey's Nineteenth Century Books on Publishing, the Booktrade and the Diffusion of Knowledge (with a searchable catalogue) contains over 700 texts. Note: this site may require registration or subscription.
Dime Novels and Penny Dreadfuls is a site based on Stanford University's collection of over 8,000 19th-century American and British booklets.
J. Hillis Miller's Graphic or Verbal: A Dilemma focuses on Victorian illustrated texts in the age of multimedia representation.
The Dante Gabriel Rossetti Archive is an ongoing, image-based editing project directed by Jerome McGann. It is housed (like Monuments and Dust) at the Institute for Advanced Technology in the Humanities at the University of Virginia.
The Internet Library of Early Journals has digitized long runs of several 18th- and 19th-century British journals. It offers large, high-resolution page images.
The Dickens Project, a multi-campus research unit of the University of California, is a large and long-standing endeavor.
PUNCH: A History Project offers analyses of nearly two dozen cartoons by Vassar College students.
The Penny Magazine project, by Laurie Dickinson and Sarah Wadsworth, offers annotated and graphical views of key issues of the magazine.
Victorian Studies: Illustrated Periodicals is Michael Hancher's syllabus for a University of Minnesota course. See especially his bibliography.
Art and Architecture:
Victorian Art and Artists: Bob Speel's pages feature biographies of 280 Victorian artists, several online "exhibits," and a guide to London museums.
Carol Gerten-Jackson reproduces countless works of art, including strong 19th-century groupings, in her Fine Art pages. Julia Kerr has also assembled reproductions of Pre-Raphaelite paintings. While these are not scholarly resources, they are very helpful as teaching tools and for finding images quickly on the Web.
Thomas J. Tobin of Duquesne University has created The Pre-Raphaelite Critic, a bibliographical guide to Pre-Raphaelite reception history. His databases are slow-loading, but worth the wait.
The William Morris Home Page is sponsored by the William Morris Society and contains an index of the Society's newsletters and related events, as well as biographical and contextual information on Morris.
Founders of the Arts and Crafts Movement provides electronic texts of essays and lectures by Morris, Oscar Wilde, Walter Crane and others. It is sponsored by J.R. Burrows and Company.
The Arts and Crafts Society: historical information compiled by and for "the modern Arts and Crafts movement."
High Victorian Gothic in England: Jeffery Howe of Boston College offers many architectural images. This site is part of his Digital Archive of Architecture, with images from prehistory to the 20th century.
Victorian Architecture is a small database of mid- to late-19th century buildings. It is part of the searchable Great Buildings Online collection.
Urban Planning, 1794-1918: An International Anthology of Articles, Conference Papers, and Reports, by John W. Reps. This site provides electronic texts for a large collection of primary sources.
The Victoria and Albert Museum offers online image archives.
Henry Dixon's London: Photographs of a Changing City, 1866-1893 is an online photography exhibit by the Guildhall Library.
Color Printing in the 19th Century is an online exhibit by the University of Delaware Library. It includes crash-course explanations of intaglio, relief, lithography, and photomechanical processes.
An Uncomprehensive Bibliography of Victorian Photography: Thomas Prasch's work may be uncomprehensive, but it is extensive and will serve as a good starting-point for students.
An American touring company offers an illustrated History of the Magic Lantern.
The Daguerreian Society presents galleries, bibliographies, and other resources on daguerrotypes.
Society and Social Issues:
Child Labour: 1750-1900: a Spartacus Educational site.
Casebook: Jack the Ripper hosts message boards and unscholarly articles, but also includes a large collection of primary sources and research tips.
Railways in the 19th Century was also created by Spartacus Educational.
In "The White Man's Burden" and Its Critics: Anti-Imperialism, 1898-1935, Jim Zwick provides primary sources for the context and reception history of Kipling's poem.
Queen Victoria: Images of Her World is a rich collection of scanned images of the Queen and people and places related to her. Unfortunately, no image sources are listed.
Robert Wotton has assembled a vast array of resources on the Boer War in the South African War Virtual Library.
Hillsdale College's Department of History has digitized a few primary sources on the Crimean War.
The Civil War in America is treated in an excellent University of Virginia Project, The Valley of the Shadow.
Studies in Scarlet Project: Marriage, Women, and the Law, 1815-1914 is a digital research collection organized by the Research Libraries Group.
In Views of the Famine, Steve Taylor of Vassar has transcribed primary sources and scanned contemporary images of the Irish Potato Famine.
The Life of the Industrial Worker in 19th-Century England consists of primary material digitized from a 1930 textbook, Readings in European History Since 1814.
Quintin Bradley's Labour History Research Site is "a guide to British labour history archives, collections, on-line research sources and web sites."
The Modern History Sourcebook: 19th-Century Britain, under the editorship of Paul Halsall, lists "public domain and copy-permitted historical texts presented cleanly (without advertising or excessive layout) for educational use." See also The Long 19th Century and the project's main page .
The British Empire is a very nicely-organized and wide-ranging teaching tool by Stephen Luscombe. See especially his chronologies and clickable maps.
An Archive of Carte de Visite Photographs: Roger Vaughan offers images of over 1,000 Victorian cartes de visite.
Mapping an Empire: The Geographic Construction of British India, 1765-1843 is Matthew Edney's large bibliography of published and unpublished sources for imperialism in India.
A site on Nineteenth Century British and Indian Armies and their Soldiers includes images and biographies. It is the work of Fred Larimore, of the University of Pennsylvania.
Charles Booth's 1889 Descriptive Map of London Poverty: This is a work in progress by David Wayne Thomas and Sabiha Ahmad, at the University of Michigan. It allows visitors to navigate Booth's color-coded map through clickable images.
The Imperial Archive is a site "dedicated to the study of Literature, Imperialism, [and] Postcolonialism." It is the work of students at Queen's University, Belfast, and consists mostly of secondary sources.
The Emancipation of Women, 1860-1920 (Spartacus Educational)
The Victorian Census Project of Staffordshire University presents Victorian census abstracts, registration statistics, returns of the Poor Law Commissioners, Pigot's Typology of England and Wales, and "various other nineteenth-century documents of both a statistical and literary nature."
The Great Britain Historical GIS Programme works at visualizing nineteenth-century data in a number of useful ways.
Nancy Mautz has assembled an annotated collection of links for students of the Industrial Revolution.
The University of Minnesota has digitized a large collection of Women's Travel Writings, 1830-1930.
Rochester University offers an electronic edition of several issues of Godey's Lady's Book from 1850. The site includes scanned images.
An annotated index of sources relating to Women's Work in the 19th Century has been assembled by students at Kennesaw State University. It is very useful, but better on American studies than on British women's work.
Exodus is an online exhibition on Irish immigration organized by the Belfast Telegraph.
Northwestern University Library hosts a searchable archive of "over 1200 digitized photographs and images recorded during the Siege and Commune of Paris ca. 1871. In addition to the images
in this set, the Library's Siege & Commune Collection contains 1500 caricatures, 68 newspapers in hard-copy and film, hundreds of books and pamphlets and about 1000 posters."
Education, Medicine, Theatre, and Religion:
John Culme's Footlight Notes is an online newsletter about popular entertainment from the 1850s to the 1920s. Biographies and scanned photographs of performers are available.
The 19th-Century London Stage: An Exploration: Graduate students at the University of Washington School of Drama's program in Computing and Theater have assembled this very useful guide. (Site missing as of 12 March 2000 -- stay tuned.)
The Adelphi Theatre Project (Alfred Nelson and Gilbert Cross)
19th-Century Medicine is an online exhibition at the University of Toledo. It concentrates on the history of medicine in America.
The Gilbert & Sullivan Archive (Jim Farron, Boise State University) includes images, librettos, plot summaries, contextual information, and sound files.
History of Phrenology on the Web (John van Wyhe). While technology has not yet progressed enough to allow for phrenology on the Web, this site offers useful resources for the study of that 19th-century pseudo-science.
Several nineteenth-century issues of the journal Scientific American have been digitized by Rochester University.
The Other in the Mirror: Sex, Historians, and Victorians is an online essay by Leslie Hall of the Wellcome Institute for the History of Medicine. It includes a bibliography.
A page on Ninteenth-Century Medical Curiosities focuses on Joseph Merrick, the so-called Elephant Man, but also offers information on other cases in the Victorian medical literature and features a small archive of photographs. Not a scholarly resource, but a well-assembled collection.
The University of Guelph hosts an archive of the works of Florence Nightingale .
Annotated Bibliography on Chartism: Ursula Strange of Nipissing University provides an extensive bibliography of Chartism after 1844.
The History of Crime and Punishment in England from 1800: A. Barrett's index of seminar lectures at Keele University.
The Huxley File, assembled by Charles Blinderman and David Joyce of Clark University, is a large archive with a good deal of primary material and many secondary sources.
Darwinism and the Victorian Literary Imagination is a partial bibliography from Peter Morton's The Vital Science: Biology and the Literary Imagination, 1860-1900, portions of which are online.
Concert Life in Nineteenth-Century London Database: No datasets have yet been released from this inter-university project.
Dickens and Victorian Education is a scholarly contribution by Leon Litvack to the Dickens Archive.
Nineteenth-Century Logic: Between Philosophy and Mathematics (Volker Peckhaus, Universität Erlangen-Nürnberg)
The Digital Research Library at the University of Pittsburgh has put together a collection of thirty 19th-century School Books.
image and text © Bethany Paige Nowviskie 2000
(compiled for Royal Holloway's program in Victorian Media and Culture)