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Home > Collections > Manuscripts


Special Collections boasts some 1 300 discrete archival collections, consisting of original research material relating to the political, social, cultural and economic history of Southern Africa, with a strong focus on the Western Cape. Collections deal with a wide range of subjects, including art, music, education, literature and language, botany, politics and architecture, and include records in all media.

Collections include the personal papers of prominent people, or whose papers constitute an important record of Southern African social history; the papers of communities not strongly represented in archives; corporate papers from non-governmental organisations, companies or institutions; the personal and research papers of UCT academics; nonadministrative records relating to the history of UCT; architectural collections of leading South African architects; papers and record books of ethnic and religious communities and papers of individuals prominent in such communities; manuscript music scores and personal papers of South African composers; papers relating to labour and trade, and the records of labour unions; the oral history of South Africa; papers and other materials associated with important social, historical, or cultural issues or movements.