National Records of Scotland

Preserving the past, Recording the present, Informing the future

Photographic Research

Photographic Research

Photographic Collections

The range of photographic media held by National Records of Scotland (NRS) is extensive, ranging from glass plate negatives from the 1850s to colour digital prints. About 40,000 entries in our online catalogue relate to photographs in the administrative records of government, evidence presented in courts of law and private papers. More than 70,000 individual photographic items, of which at least a third are glass-based - have been preserved to archival standard in secure storage by our Conservation Services.

Most of the photographs are in two specific collections – the records of Upper Clyde Shipbuilders and British Rail.

Online research

If you have not found what you were looking for while browsing our images samplers, you can continue your research using the following web sites, which allow you to view photographic and image collections online and to order copies.

National collections and image libraries in Scotland

Local collections and image libraries