Belfast & Provincial Printed Books

Repository: Linen Hall Library

Identity Statement

TitleSir Edward Carson's Scrapbook
Archive ReferenceIE LHL
Web Link to this Entry
Creation Dates1912
Level of DescriptionItem (The smallest intellectually indivisible archival unit, e.g., a letter, memorandum, report, photograph, sound recording).
Extent Medium1 volume


Creator(s): Carson, Edward, Sir (1854-1935), politician, barrister, judge.

  • Administrative History ↴

    Edward Carson was born in 1854 in Dublin, into a wealthy Anglican family. The Carsons were of Scottish origin. After reading Law in Trinity College, Dublin, Carson was called to the Irish Bar at King's Inns in 1877. He gained a reputation for fearsome advocacy and supreme legal ability and became regarded as a brilliant barrister. Carson's political career began on 20 June 1892, when he was appointed Solicitor-General for Ireland, although he was not then a member of the House of Commons. He was elected as Member of Parliament for the University of Dublin in the 1892 general election as a Liberal Unionist. Carson maintained his career as a barrister and was admitted to the English Bar in 1893. In 1896 he was sworn of the Irish Privy Council. He was appointed Solicitor-General for England on 7 May 1900. He served in this position until the Conservative government resigned in December 1905, when he was rewarded with membership of the Privy Council. Carson opposed Home Rule for Ireland and campaigned vigorously against it. He spoke against the Home Rule Bill in the House of Commons and organised rallies in Ireland promoting a provisional government for "the Protestant province of Ulster" should a third Home Rule Bill come into law. On Sunday 28 September 1912 'Ulster Day', he was the first signatory on the Ulster Covenant, which bound 447,197 signatories to resist Home Rule with the threat that they would use "all means necessary" after Carson had established the Ulster Volunteers, the first loyalist paramilitary group. From it the Ulster Volunteer Force was formed in January 1913 to undergo military training and purchase arms. In Parliament, Carson refused to compromise, demanding Ulster 'be given a resolution rather than a stay of execution.' As well as leading the Ulster Unionist Party (1910-1921), Carson served as Attorney General of England and Wales (1915) and First Lord of the Admiralty (1916-1917). He retired from public life in 1929, and died in October 1935.
  • Archival History ↴

  • Immediate Source Acquisition ↴


Content & Structure

  • Scope & Content: Carson, Edward, Sir (1854-1935), politician, barrister, judge. ↴

    This collection comprises Sir Edward Carson’s personal scrapbook of Ulster Day 1912, including Carson’s own copy of the Ulster Covenant.

    There are many press cuttings, including contemporary cartoons, in addition to posters advertising anti-Home Rule rallies, and a large number of telegrams from Carson’s supporters. One unusual item is a “poison-pen” postcard, full of threats and abuse, but signed “Yours sincerely, Liza Jane”.

  • Appraisal Destruction ↴

    Permanent Retention. These historical documents are an important source for the Home Rule Crisis.
  • Accruals ↴

    No further accruals expected.
  • Arrangement ↴

    1 item – no arrangement applicable

Conditions of Access & Use

Access Conditions This Collection is for reference only. Advance notification of intention to visit.
Conditions Governing ReproductionContact Linen Hall Library for further information.
Creation Dates1912
Level of DescriptionItem (The smallest intellectually indivisible archival unit, e.g., a letter, memorandum, report, photograph, sound recording).
Extent Medium1 volume
Material Language ScriptEnglish

Allied Materials

There are no Allied Materials

Descriptive Control Area

Archivist NoteLinen Hall Library
Rules/ConventionsISAD (G): General International Standard Archival Description, 2nd ed., Ottowa, International Council on Archives, 2000.