The Libraries of Booth and The Philosophical Society

Edward Thomas Booth wrote and published his rough notes describing the his observations on bird behaviour in the field. This was typical of many gentleman naturalists of the period. He joined other notable collectors and naturalists such as Henry Dresser, John and Elizabeth Gould and John James Audubon in having his work published in limited editions and illustrated by notable artists of the day. These attractive volumes were proudly displayed in the libraries and studies of his contemporaries.

Booth’s own library contained many other books on the natural sciences, and after his death the Booth Museum became the meeting place for the Brighton and Hove Philosophical Society. They built up a sizeable library of books over the years. They continued to meet at the Booth until the late 20th century, and upon their dissolution the library was passed over to the Museum.

The library collection consisted of historic journals and papers from local and national scientific organisations and museums. They also include treatise and other commercially published books on the natural sciences. The library is today housed in both the Museum itself, and up at the Keep, where they can be booked for viewing.