Skip to Main Content

Sexton Collection: Home

Personal collection of Lieut. Col. Sexton.

About the Collection

The Sexton Anglo-Indian and Oriental Library was created by Queen’s College Cork (UCC after 1908) to support a recruitment drive for graduates from Engineering and Medicine – as well as other faculties – to join the Indian Civil Service. Lieut. Col. M.J. Sexton, Royal Army Medical Corps, a surgeon, was a graduate of Queen’s College Cork. After his period in India he appears to have moved to South Africa and became involved in the Boer War. There is correspondence between Col. Sexton and Sir Bertram Windle, President of the College, as well “crate content lists” for items shipped to the university. However not all the material came from Sexton; it appears he was the liaison person and organiser as well as a contributor, with other officers donating material to the project through him. 

Lieut.-Col. Sexton, a graduate and surgeon in the Indian Medical Service, donated many gifts to the College from about 1889 onwards. The bibliographic side of the donation amounted to over 1,000 items dealing mostly with India but also with adjacent countries. His reasoning behind the gift was to offer opportunities for study to students intent on similar careers.  

The subject matter in the collection relates to the history, culture and literature of Iran, Afghanistan, Myanmar and India, and the presence of Europeans in India. The collection comprises c.702 books of which c.20 are from the 18th century, c.420 are from the 19th century items and the remainder are from the 20th century. In addition the collection also has manuscript items. Languages in the collection include Tamil, Paloung and Pali. 

Recent to 2003 among Sexton's surviving books from this donation a manuscript volume of hand painted illustrations was discovered. They show costumes worn by various professions and sub-cultures in 19th century India. We are grateful to Kawai Jit Singh, Department of Food Technology, for photographing and interpreting them for us. 

Biographical History

In "Notes from Simla" Lieut-Colonel MJ Sexton is one of the names featuring on the Nominal Roll of Royal Army Medical Corps officers on the Indian establishment who will be tour·exptred during the trooping season of 1908-9.

Sexton is mentioned in various distribution lists of surgeons and generals in the Journal of the Royal Army Medical Corps and is also mentioned in the despatches in the Supplement to the London Gazette 28 January 1916.

Collection Highlights

Examples of the proverbs

Rochirām Gajumal. A handbook of Sindhi proverbs with English renderings and equivalent sayings. Karachi : Printed at the "Commissioner's press,", 1895.

Raynal, abbé (Guillaume-Thomas-François. A philosophical and political history of the settlements and trade of the Europeans in the East and West Indies. Translated from the French of the Abbé Raynal, by J. Justamond.   Dublin : Printed for John Exshaw, no.86, and William Halhead, no.63 Dame-street, 1779.

Example of collection stamp

Raynal, abbé (Guillaume-Thomas-François. A philosophical and political history of the settlements and trade of the Europeans in the East and West Indies. Translated from the French of the Abbé Raynal, by J. Justamond.   Dublin : Printed for John Exshaw, no.86, and William Halhead, no.63 Dame-street, 1779.

More Information

U.157-U.167: Sexton manuscript collection, Special Collections, UCC Library.