The Library collects personal papers, particularly those with relevance to Victoria, such as letters and correspondence, diaries, memoirs and other unpublished texts.
These collections can also include photographs, electronic records, artworks, genealogies, maps, and audio and video recordings.
Personal papers are collected on the basis of historical, literary or cultural significance to Victoria. The Library holds the personal papers of many figures who have achieved a level of standing or influence in the Victorian community, including Sir Redmond Barry, Ned Kelly, John and Sunday Reed and Peter Carey.
Significance does not just apply to those with a level of fame. Samuel Lazarus, Caroline Dexter, Anne Drysdale and Jong Ah Sing may not be household names but their papers (and others entrusted to the Library) provide a unique window into the past, documenting the social life and customs, personal histories, thoughts and opinions of the myriad people who have played a part in the formation of today’s Victoria.