The Swaffham Prior Natural History Society was founded in 1835 by the children of the Revd George Bitton Jermyn (1789-1857), antiquary. Jermyn married Catherine Rowland (1792-1828) in 1815, and became curate of Swaffham Prior, near Newmarket, Cambridgeshire, in 1820. His children by Catherine included Hugh Willoughby Jermyn (1820-1903), who became president of the society, and was later Bishop of Brechin, 1875-1903, and Primus of Scotland, 1886-1901. The society was of a serious nature and included several distinguished persons, whose names are among the list of members in the minute book. It continued until 1840.
Minutes of the proceedings of the Swaffham Prior Natural History Society, 83 folios: (fo. 1) rules of the society; (fo. 2) list of members; (fo. 4) minutes; (fo. 67v) continuation of the list of members; (fo. 68) further minutes; (fo. 70v) continuation of the list of members; (fo. 73v) treasurer's accounts; (fo. 77) list of fish found on English coasts. Attached to the fly-leaves are a covering letter of the Revd E. Jermyn to C. Allex and a pedigree of Catherine Rowland, showing her Huguenot descent, in the hand of E. Jermyn. The minute book is accompanied by a file containing collected leaves.
The book belonged at first to H.W. Jermyn. On his death in 1903 it passed to his son, the Revd E. Jermyn, rector of Croughton, Brackley, who in 1911 presented it to C. Allex of Swaffham Prior. It was bought on the death of Allex by A.S. Neech of Milton, Cambridgeshire, and was thereafter acquired by Francis Jenkinson. Bequeathed to the Library by Jenkinson in 1923.