As a charity, the Society provided these free also to outside parties with an interest in the Carlyles, as well as to libraries in Scotland and overseas.
In recent years the cost of this operation has outstripped the Society’s resources and, opting out of charitable status, the Society has issued its papers electronically.
He undertook the work when his friend, John Stuart Mill, found he was too committed on other projects to deliver on a contract he had signed with publishers and write it himself.
Having completed the manuscript, Carlyle sent the only copy to Mill to read: whose maid then promptly burned it as kindling, apparently by mistake.
Carlyle had to rewrite the entire book from scratch, and the resulting second version was written in a passionate, flowing style that had never before been seen in historical writing.
Other historical works included published in 1845, and his last major book, a biography of Frederick the Great, published in 1865.
The wider picture in Scotland at the time is set out in our Historical Timeline.
Carlyle was born in Ecclefechan, a village five miles north of Annan, in Dumfries and Galloway, which today lies close to the M74.
The Carlyle Society celebrates the work and life of Thomas Carlyle (1795-1881), Scottish essayist and historian, born in Ecclefechan, and Jane Welsh Carlyle (1801-1866) letter writer, born in Haddington.
The Carlyle Society has for years published their Occasional Papers which have gone out to members, many of them overseas.