At River Street, Truro, Cornwall, the Royal Cornwall Museum has a major library on the history of Cornwall, a standing exhibition relating the history of the county through its heritage collections gleaned from the land, its people and their occupations and organisations (in farming, fishing, mining & industrial discoveries and inventions and in the whole span of the visual arts). It also maintains a large permanent collection of art works, paintings and sculptures, etchings and drawings.
The museum has a major collection of photographs of Cornwall and a reasonably comprehensive archive of the Isles of Scilly. Negatives, old glass slides and prints number about 35,000, for which there are comprehensive indexes now being catalogued for on-line access. The collection is in constant demand by publishers, TV companies and the general public, the income from which allows limited money to be spent on new acquisitions so that the collection is always growing. All aspects of Cornwall are covered, topographical and industrial. Its greatest strength is the collection of Herbert HUGHES (died 1937) of Dudley, Worcestershire, who with John Charles BURROW of Camborne, a professional photographer, toured Cornwall and the Isles of Scilly annually, taking photographs as they went. The collection contains a large number of original glass negatives by Burrow of underground mining scenes, the first successful ones taken in Cornwall, some of which were published by Burrow & Thomas in 1893. The photographic section open on Tuesdays and Wednesdays, and prior notice is advised.