NYU Libraries has arranged trial access to two collections from British Online Archives now through June 12th, 2017.
African Blue Books, 1821-1953 – These statistics cover the history of thirteen colonies across Africa. The date range of statistics for each colony depends on who ran it at the time. Most colonial statistics cover that colony’s funds, its population and the names of its officers. Details of which countries each colony was trading with and what they bought or sold were recorded in these books. Public services which were run by the British colonies are also covered by these records. The statistics for Africa told the Colonial Office how the British Empire was performing as a business. Some topics in these books only appear in a few issues: population numbers for slaves would be recorded until the abolition of slavery. However, military spending would only be included at times of war. The imperial statistics in this collection are listed by year for ease of reference.
Colonial Law in Africa, 1920-1945 – Originally known as the ‘Government Gazettes’, each item contains the colonial laws for the year they were published. The legal records also include property for sale, probate records and bankruptcy notices. This is the second part of the three part series ‘Colonial Law in Africa’. These records cover the transfer of Southern Rhodesia from the British South Africa Company to colonial rule. A series of legal notices also reveal the impact of the Treaty of Versailles on Tanzania. The Second World War then led to a series of new laws in these colonies. These gazettes were published alongside the African Blue Books of Statistics during the 19th and 20th centuries.