This collection documents William Vaudrey’s voyages around the world. It includes his diaries and their transcriptions by an unknown hand. The diaries are written in very small, nearly illegible script, and sometimes in faint pencil. Some are illustrated with small architectural drawings, which are also reproduced in the transcriptions. The diaries seem to have been prepared for publication, however no trace of publication was found (as of 2018). The transcriptions may have been written soon after the original diaries, indicated by the neat, formal cursive which uses the “long s” or “descending s” which was still sometimes used in handwriting the late 19th century. Vaudrey’s diaries give a description of the countries he visited, and relay the difficulties of the journey in the middle of the nineteenth century, as well as provide some anthropological approaches to the populations encountered. The collection also includes travel documents such as passports, as well as correspondence with relatives and travel companions.
Little is known about William Vaudrey Esq., except by his own papers. He was an English subject born in Lancashire. It appears that he traveled for pleasure. According to his French passport, he was 25 years old in 1838.