Beet Lantern Slide Collection

Ref: SLI 22

Title: Beet Lantern Slide Collection

Scope: A collection of just under 2,500 lantern slides collected by Arthur Edgar Beet, an academic in the Applied Science Department at the University of Sheffield in the first half of the 20th century.

Dates: Late 19th and early 20th centuryArthur Edgar Beet
Level: Fonds
Extent: c.2,500 slides
Name of creator: Arthur Edgar Beet

Administrative / biographical history:
This collection consists of just under 2,500 magic lantern slides covering a wide variety of subjects, including photographs of late 19th century Sheffield, illustrations of scenes from children’s tales and Bible stories, images of the Boer War and the First World War, portraits of important historical figures, and photographs of London and European cities. The majority of the slides are standard UK lantern slides 3¼ inches square, but there are also a wide range of panorama slides, single slipper slides, double slipper slides, glass pivot slides, rackwork slides and rare and unique homemade glass slides.

Arthur Edgar Beet was a lecturer in fuel technology at the University of Sheffield in the first half of the twentieth century. He was an amateur local historian who developed an interest in collecting lantern slides and projection equipment: a large addition to his collection was made in 1954 by John Arthur Southern, who bequeathed to Beet his own collection of 800 slides and a late 19th century projector.

On Beet’s death in 1968, his son, A.D.H. Beet offered to donate the collection of slides to the University of Sheffield. They became part of the Archives of Cultural Tradition, originally housed in the National Centre for English Cultural Tradition, and transferred to the University Library’s Special Collections Department in 2008.

  • Source: Donated in 1968; transferred to the University Library in 2008.
  • System of arrangement: As received
  • Subjects: Lantern slides – 19th century; Lantern slides – 20th century
  • Names: Beet, Arthur Edgar
  • Conditions of access: Available to all researchers, by appointment
  • Restrictions: None
  • Copyright: Out of copyright
  • Finding aids: Listed