According to Howard Cline, Historians of Latin America in the United States (1966), there were four persons in the United States who listed as their special research interest the history of Honduras. That small group, along with specialists in Honduras from other countries and other fields, will certainly welcome the present publication, which provides a detailed guide to the recently microfilmed Archivo Nacional de Honduras. Hopefully the knowledge that such rich resources are readily accessible will win converts to the fascinating but neglected study of Honduran history.

The Guía is simply a register of all items microfilmed in Honduras by the Mobile Microfilm Unit of UNESCO in cooperation with the Comisión de Historia of the Instituto Panamericano de Geografía e Historia. It is the third such guide to be published (the first is a general guide, and the second is on Barbados). A fourth, on Peru, is in preparation.

In the first fifty-four rolls of the Honduras microfilm are included individual cédulas reales, petitions, judgments, claims, reports, and various legajos with titles and dates. Probably the majority of documents are from Tegucigalpa and Comayagua during the seventeenth and eighteenth centuries. There is none earlier than 1606. Information on Indian relations, piratical incursions, defenses, collection of taxes, sale of offices, slavery, epidemics, and Church-state relations is to be found in quantity, but perhaps the most comprehensive documentary material has to do with mining.

Forty-six additional rolls contain printed material. The microfilm team photographed numerous Honduran newspapers, broadsides, decrees, government reports, and books—principally from the nineteenth century. The scarcity of these items, including even the Gaceta Oficial, in libraries in the United States and Central America, makes this microfilm collection especially valuable.

Unfortunately the foreword and explanation of method are so brief that it is difficult to tell what selectivity, if any, the microfilm team exercised. Apparently everything in the Archivo Nacional was microfilmed, including a few widely scattered Nicaraguan and Costa Rican periodicals and even a few standard works in European history. In the future I should think that the Comisión de Historia would wish to exclude material readily available elsewhere. Also the recruit to Honduran history should be reminded that the microfilming project did not include the archives of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and other separate government and Church archives.