Manuscript Resources for the Study of Portuguese History at the Kenneth Spencer Research Library, University of Kansas

Document Type


Journal/Book Title/Conference

Bulletin of the Society of Spanish and Portuguese Historical Studies






Society for Spanish and Portuguese Historical Studies

Publication Date


First Page


Last Page



Scholars who work in the area of Portuguese History are naturally and quite rightly drawn to the rich and varied manuscript resources to be found in the libraries and archives of Portugal and its former colonies. We would do well to remember, however, that there exist significant collections of Portuguese materials elsewhere, most notably in the great national and university libraries of Europe and North America. But often scholars are drawn to these more obvious repositories and unfortunately ignore smaller and less well-known collections. This is especially true of North American historians who often simply assume that important re- sources are only to be found in Portugal or in the largest libraries. One Chicago professor of my acquaintance spent summer after summer in European libraries working on a project centering on early Latin mediaeval manuscripts and was astounded to learn that a very significant manuscript for his project was housed in the Newberry Library, only a few miles from his home. He had simply never considered the possibility that a library so close might have anything worth looking at. For North Americans, at least, the assumption is that one must go to Europe to find European primary source materials. And I suspect that few Europeans ever consider that significant European manuscripts are now located in such places in the United States as Kansas.


Back issues available as hard copies or microfilm and microfiche.