A uniquely accessible archive database

The British Empire spanned vast regions of the world, and its political influence stretched from the UK and Ireland to mandates, protectorates, and colonies in the Middle East and Africa, from the West Indies to British Malaya and Singapore in Southeast Asia as well as to the subcontinent of India (including Ceylon and Pakistan) and the self-governing dominions of Canada, Australia, New Zealand, Newfoundland, and South Africa.

Gathering, processing, and analyzing information from every corner of the globe during World War I, World War II, and the fragile period in between the wars saw the development of a network of government agencies collecting information and funneling it back to Whitehall and the centralized British government. The resulting historical record of the last century is uniquely dense and, today, accessible to researchers through this new digitized database collection.

Including many secret government documents now declassified, this archive will offer new perspective on British decolonization and global policy and strategy as well as providing insight into international politics and diplomacy during the twentieth century.

Product Features & Tools

Term Frequency

Researchers can see the frequency of search terms within data sets to begin identifying central themes and assessing how individuals, places, events, and ideas interact and develop over time.

Topic Finder

By grouping commonly occurring themes, this database tool reveals connections between search terms, helping to shape research by integrating diverse content with relevant information.

Cross-Search Capability

Searching across the content of complementary primary sources, including books, in one united, intuitive environment enables innovative research.

Learn more about the Gale Primary Sources Platform »