Records of Yemen 1798–1960

ISBN:  (13) 978-1-85207-370-1        Extent:   16 volumes, 12,000 pages, including 1 map box, prints & photos

Editor: Doreen Ingrams, and Leila Ingrams    Published: 1993
Paper: Printed on acid free paper
Binding: Library bindings with gilt finish. The front cover carries the Yemeni crest.
See sample pages: not available

The prospect of unification of the Yemen in 1990 prompted the beginning of work on this collection which is likely to remain unrivalled as the definitive source work for the history of the region. Five years of research, including privileged access to ancient and fragile archives now closed to public view, have culminated in an extensive collection of key original documents reproduced in facsimile from British government files, detailing the history of the affairs of the Imams of Sana´a and the Aden Colony and Protectorate. The important historical material in this work provides scholars, administrators and diplomats with an extensive and importance repertoire of primary documents reflecting the history of the Yemen.


Early volumes reveal the legendary fascination of ´Arabia Felix´ (as the Yemen was once known), the competition of European powers for the coffee trade and the arrival of the British, by force, in Aden in 1839. The later volumes show the political instability of the post-war period which was to lead to the departure of the British in 1967. For much of the modern period the volumes provide evidence for the development of the Imamate in the north, the Aden Colony and Protectorate in the south, the impact of the British and Ottoman empires, and the complex political relations between Sana´a and Aden.
The documents trace the ferment of conflict and shifting allegiances between the tribes. Negotiations and treaties on boundary affairs are examined in detail and the Saudi-Yemeni flashpoints of the twentieth century are fully covered.
The collection is magnificent - illustrated with historic prints, photographs and maps, including colour plates and full-colour maps.


Doreen Ingrams and Leila Ingrams brought to their editorship a long personal knowledge of the Yemen. Their work has included writings and exhibitions on its history, culture and social writings and exhibitions on its history. Doreen and her husband Harold, the distinguished administrator, traveller and writer, first went to Aden in 1934 and were the first Europeans to live in Hadhramawt. They shared the Gold Medal of the Royal Geographical Society and the Lawrence Medal of the Royal Central Asian Society. Both received the Richard Burton Memorial Medal of the Royal Asiatic Society. Leila was their daughter and spent her early childhood in the Yemen which she frequently revisited. 

The publishers and editors acknowledge with thanks the assistance of the British Library (Oriental and India Office Collections) in granting access to the Aden records.


Landmarks In The Recorded History Of The Yemen:
  • First recorded visit of the Portuguese to Aden, 1513
  • John Jourdain´s remarkable journey to Sana´a, 1609
  • Carsten Niebuhr´s journeys in Yemen, 1761-63 including accounts of Hodeidah, Taiz, Aden and Hadhramawt, the coffee trade in Mokha; an audience with the Imam of Sana´a
  • Muhammad Ali Pasha´s Egyptian troops against the Wahhabis, 1817
  • Survey of Kuria Muria and Socotra, 1830s
  • The British capture of Aden, 1839
  • Treaty of Peace, Friendship and Commerce with Sultan Ali bin Muhsin Fadhl of Lahej, 1849
  • Conflict in the Tihamah; the Turks at Hodeidah and Mokha, 1840s
  • Murder of Imam of Sana´a, 1850
  • Development of British Settlement at Aden, 1850s onward
  • Water supply projects, 1869 onward
  • Relations with tribes; Fadhli, Aqrabi, Aulaqi, Kathiri, Qu´aiti
  • Turkish occupation of the Tihamah; Asiri uprising; state of anarchy in Sana´a, 1850s & 1860s
  • Ali Pasha, Governor of Yemen, recaptures Hodeidah, 1870
  • Ahmad Mukhtar Pasha enters Sana´a, 1872; Turkish occupation
  • British declare Aden Protectorate, 1873
  • Turkish claims and confrontations at Hawshabiand Lahej, 1870s
  • Turkish rule in Yemen; Imam urges revolt, 1890s
  • Imam of Sana´a requests protection of British Government, 1900
  • Development of Aden port and harbour, 1880s
  • British purchase Shaykh Othman, 1882
  • Delimitation of Anglo-Turkish boundary, 1902-5 and the Anglo-Turkish line, 1913
  • Rebellion of the Idrisi, 1909 and conditions in Asir, 1910
  • Military operations of Imam and Idrisi, 1911-1913
  • World War I: British treaty with Idrisi, 1915; the Yemen Confederacy, 1917; British support of tribes against Turks; negotiations with Imam, 1917
  • Turkish evacuation, 1918-1920; Imam Yahya attempts to re-unite the Yemen, 1919
  • Ibn Saud takes over Asir, 1925 and the Mecca Agreement, 1927
  • Treaty between the Yemen and Hijaz-Nejd, 1931
  • Treaty of Friendship and Mutual Co-operation between United Kingdom and the Yemen, 1934
  • Saudi-Yemeni war over Asir; Treaty of Taif, 1934
  • Proposal to obtain oil concessions from Imam, 1936
  • Aden becomes British colony, 1937
  • World War II: effect on the Yemen, Aden colony and Protectorate; measures against Italian activity
  • Famine in Hadhramawt, 1943
  • Opposition to Imam Yahya and his assassination, 1948; opposition to Imam Ahmad, 1950
  • Oil exploration in Shabwa area, 1949 and oil surveys, 1950s
  • Movement against British rule and calls for independence, 1950s
  • Yemen: attempted coup against Imam Ahmad, 1957
  • West´s confrontation with Soviet bloc on military and economic aid, 1950s
  • Aden: general strike and state of emergency, 1958; federation of the Amirates of the south, 1959; arms traffic into Aden Protectorate; the South Arabian League; continued unrest, 1960


The prints and photographs include:

  • Prospect among the coffee mountains, 1760s
  • View of Mokha, c.1830
  • Palaces of Sultan Muhsin at Lahej, c.1809, and Aden, c.1840
  • Sketch of ancient minaret by Capt. S. B. Haines, 1840s
  • Destruction of Shuqra, 1866
  • Nineteenth-century Turkish officials serving in the Yemen
  • Mosque at Mokha, c.1870s
  • Aden, Steamer Point, 1870s
  • Tomb and mosque of Shaykh Othman, 1893
  • Aden, Crater, Main Pass in distance, 1900
  • The Sultans of Lahej, early 20th century
  • Mukalla, West Gate with Kasadi Palace, 1923
  • Island of Kamaran, 1936
  • Shihr: palace of Mohri Sultan, 1937
  • Caravan from Mukalla descending Aqabat al-Hibil, 1934
  • The Walled City of Shibam, 1943
  • Iman Yahya, 1930 and Imam Ahmad, 1950s
  • Sana'a: royal children with the Imam's soldiers, 1930
  • Site for Aden Oil Refinery, 1952
  • Sana'a: the Imams palace, 1952
  • Views of Seiyun and Tarim in Wadi Hadhramawt, 1940s

The folding maps and views, some in colour, include:

  • Niebuhr's map of Arabia showing the Yemen, 1773
  • Indian Navy survey of Sokotra, 1835
  • Map showing the conquests of Muhammed Ali Pasha of Egypt on the Shores of the Red Sea, 1837
  • The Yemen and the tribes in the vicinity of Aden, 1839
  • Chart of the Gulf of Aden, 1847
  • Aden boundary line claimed by British, 1902
  • Map of Lahej delta and Aden with Ottoman Turkish inscription, 1915
  • Outline map of Asir, 1916
  • The Yemen and the Western and Eastern Aden Protectorates, 1956
  • The volcanic range of Jabal Shamsan forming a background to Aden Camp and Settlement: water-colour by Capt. Haines, c.1840
  • Panoramic view of the walled city of Sana'a from the terrace of the Turkish Commandant's house, c.1870

The colour plates include:

  • Aden Camp and Settlement: water-colour by Capt. S.B.Haines, 1840s
  • View of Mokha, c.1860
  • Coastal view of Red Sea, c.1860
  • Postage stamps: Aden Colony, 1937; Qu'aiti State of Shihr and Mukalla, 1942; Kathiri State of Seiyun, 1942

The maps in the text include:

  • Routes from Aden to tribal territories; Abdali, Aqrabi, Fadhli, Subayhi, c.1860s
  • Extent of British territory, 1891
  • Limits of Amir of Dhala, 1902
  • Turkish campaign: railways and boundary line, 1906
  • Tribal map of Hadhramawt, 1916
  • Al Quhrah and tribes around Sana'a, 1917
  • Tribes and districts around Mokha and Taiz, 1917
  • Sketch map of Yemen and Asir, 1924
  • Sketch map of boundary line between Asir, Tihamah and Yemen; disposition of Saudi forces, c.1934
  • Treaty of Taif boundary line, 1934
  • British Forces Aden Command Patrol Areas, 1943
  • Dhofar-Mahrah boundaries, 1947
  • Frontier claims by Ibn Saud, 1950s