The Morrison Collection is the first major rare book collection that the Libraries received. The history of this collection goes back to 1806 when a library was set up by the members of the English Factory in Canton. The collection later formed the basis of the library of the Morrison Education Society set up as a memorial to the Rev. Robert Morrison, D.D. who died in 1834. The library first moved to Macao in 1841 and then to Hong Kong in 1842. At that time it consisted of 3,500 volumes. In 1869 the collection became part of the stock of the newly opened City Hall Library. But a few years later the usefulness of the Morrison Library to the general public was in doubt and it was loaned to the newly established University of Hong Kong in 1914. In 1925 the collection was made over permanently to the University.
The Morrison Collection is kept separately in the glass fronted cases around the walls of the Western Rare Book Room. Each volume bears the City Hall Library book-stamp, and some volumes also bear the signature of Rev. Robert Morrison. A Catalogue of the Morrison Collection is available to view online.