Library Collection

Postcard Collection

At the end of the 19th and early 20th centuries, sending picture postcards was all the rage – the equivalent of Facebook!  Millions of cards were posted and many more bought as souvenirs of visits, holidays, and important events.

Our collection of over 1000 postcards includes pictures of Guildford and surrounding villages, covering a wide range of subjects: street scenes, institutions, sites of historical interest, notable events and local people engaged in their everyday work and leisure activities. Many of the postcards were printed by Surrey-based photographic companies of the period. By far the most well-known local company was Frith & Co. of Reigate established by the Quaker greengrocer and pioneer photographer Francis Frith (1822-1898). Another local postcard publisher was Frank Lasham (1850-1925) of Guildford, who was President of the Natural History and Literary Society and Chairman of the Institute.