Bodleian Library logo

Department of Special Collections
Contact Information
Search All Online Catalogues

Consulting material: To consult archives and manuscripts, a full and unrestricted Bodleian reader's card (Group A) is required. You should apply for your card at the Admissions Office.

Pre-ordering: Before your visit you may order up to ten items by emailing Please be advised that some collection material is held offsite; we advise pre-ordering at least two working days before your visit to ensure material is available on your arrival.

Collection Level Description: Diaries of Sir John Maxwell

Reference: GB 0162 MSS.Afr.s.2133
Title: Diaries of Sir John Maxwell
Dates of Creation: 1909-1930
Extent: 5 boxes (22 volumes)
Name of Creator: John Maxwell

Language of Material: English

Administrative/Biographical History

Sir John Maxwell, CMG (1921) Kt (1930), was born on the 6 September 1875 at Maxwelltown, Kirkcudbright, Scotland and educated at Dumfries Academy. He served articles as a solicitor with Walker & Sharpe, Maxwelltown, Dumfries, studied law at Glasgow University (1896-1898) and qualified as a Solicitor in 1899.

On entering the Colonial Administrative Service, Maxwell was posted to the Gold Coast (now Ghana) where he served as: Assistant District Commissioner (1902); Travelling Commissioner (1905); Provincial Commissioner (1907); Commissioner for the Eastern Province (1909); Commissioner for the Western Province (1911); Colonial Secretary and Governor's Deputy (1916); Deputy Chief Commissioner (1921); Secretary for Native Affairs (1923); Acting Governor (twice); Acting Colonial Secretary; Attorney-General and Solicitor-General.

Sir Maxwell retired in 1930 and died on the 31 March 1946.

Scope and Content

Diaries of Sir John Maxwell, relating to his career as a Colonial Administrator in the Gold Coast.

Administrative Information

Immediate Source of Acquisition

Deposited by Sir John Maxwell's daughter in April 1989.

Access Conditions

Bodleian reader's ticket required.

Reproduction Restrictions

No reproduction or publication of personal papers without permission. Contact the library in the first instance.

Further Information

Finding Aids

The library holds a card index of all manuscript collections in its reading room and a handlist is also available for this collection.

Access Points

Maxwell | Sir | John | 1875-1946 | Colonial Administrator

Great Britain | Colonial Administrative Service

Colonial administrators | Ghana | Diaries

Ghana | Officials and employees

Transformation from XML to HTML by Lawrence Mielniczuk
15 December 2011