Cataloguing of RCPI’s historic book collection complete

Duns Library

The Royal College of Physicians of Ireland is celebrating an important milestone in the ongoing project to catalogue our historic library holdings. We have now catalogued all the books in our collection, with all 14,718 items now available in our online library catalogue.

This significant project, led by Keeper of Collections, Harriet Wheelock, has taken ten years to complete. Harriet is keen to recognize the hard work of the library interns within this process saying, “This work would not have been possible without the hard work and dedication of our library interns over the last 10 years. I would like to extend a huge amount of gratitude to them for their assistance in this mammoth task. I am delighted that all of the interns I have mentored have gone on to progress in their library careers and are now working in university, national and medical libraries in Ireland and the UK, it reflects their immense talent and passion.”

What next?

On this project, Harriet says, “I am very pleased with the completion of this part of the cataloging process. The book collection is an important resource for those researching the history of medicine in Ireland. In the last 10 years over 50 books and articles have been published that have included research in our collections.”  

In terms of the cataloguing that still needs to be completed Harriet says, “the College’s unique collection of historical medical periodicals and pamphlets is the next project. We estimate that there are around 8,000 pamphlets in the collection, but there are currently uncatalogued and are not available for researchers. We look forward to this next challenge within the RCPI Heritage Centre.”

To access the online library catalogue simply visit

To make an appointment to view any items from our archive simply contact us by email to or by phone on 01 6698817. Our reading room is open Tuesday to Friday from 10am to 1pm and from 2pm to 4pm, by appointment.

If you would like to donate any items relating to the history of medicine in Ireland to the RCPI Heritage Centre please email