Evans was born in Shrewsbury, United Kingdom and educated at St George’s School at Harpenden. After National Service in Palestine he went up to King’s College, Cambridge, to read English, followed by a Master’s at Birmingham University. He then spent some time as a private tutor before joining Mather & Crowther advertising agency as a copywriter in 1953.
In 1964 he and his wife Mary Evans (1936–2010) founded the Mary Evans Picture Library, an archive of historical illustrations. In 1981 he co-founded the Association for the Scientific Study of Anomalous Phenomena.
- Intrusions: Society and the Paranormal. London and Boston: Routledge & Kegan Paul, 1982.
- The Evidence for UFOs. Wellingborough, Northampton, England: Aquarian Press, 1983.
- Visions, Apparitions, Alien Visitors. Wellingborough, Northampton, England: Aquarian Press, 1984.
- Gods, Spirits, Cosmic Guardians. Wellingborough, Northampton: Aquarian Press, 1987.
- Alternate States of Consciousness: Unself, Other-self, and Superself. Wellingborough, Northampton: Aquarian Press, 1989.
- Frontiers of Reality, Aquarian Press, 1989
- Evans, Hilary, and John Spencer, eds. Phenomena: Forty Years of Flying Saucers. New York: Avon Books, 1989.
- Evans, Hilary, and Dennis Stacy, eds. UFO 1947-1997: Fifty Years of Flying Saucers. London: John Brown, 1997.
- Evans, Hilary, and Robert Bartholomew, eds. Outbreak! The Encyclopedia of Extraordinary Social Behaviour. San Antonio, Texas: Anomalist Books, 2009.
- Evans, Hilary "SLIders: The Enigma of Streetlight Interference" San Antonio, Texas: Anomalist Books, 2010
- Coleman, Loren. "Hilary Evans Obituary". Cryptomundo.
- Grossman, Wendy M (16 August 2011). "Hilary Evans obituary". The Guardian (UK). Retrieved 23 October 2013.
- Ernest Kay The International authors and writers who's who, Volumes 2001-2002, Cambridge, 7th ed., 1976 p. 180
- Mary Evans Picture Library FAQs
- Lydia Thornley & Valentine Evans, Mary Evans Picture Library: visual documentation of the past, London : The Beacon Press, 1995
- Evans, Hilary, and John Spencer, eds. Phenomena: Forty Years of Flying Saucers. New York: Avon Books, 1989, p.409
- David Morrow, Close encounters of the street lamp kind, The Independent Life & Style, Thursday, 31 August 1995
- Jerome Clark, Encyclopedia of strange and unexplained physical phenomena, Thomson Gale Press, 1993, ISBN 0-8103-8843-X ISBN 978-0810388437 p.329
Additional book reviews
- Gillian Bennett. "Seeing Ghosts: Experiences of the Paranormal by Hilary Evans", Folklore, Vol. 115, No. 3 (Dec., 2004), pp. 373–374 (JSTOR)
- Steve Rybicki. "The Picture Researcher's Handbook by Hilary Evans, Mary Evans, Andra Nelki", RQ, Vol. 15, No. 2 (WINTER 1975), p. 174 (JSTOR)
- Christina Bostick. "Picture Sources by Ann Novotny, Rosemary Eakins; The Picture Researcher's Handbook; An International Guide to Picture Sources—And How to Use Them by Hilary Evans, Mary Evans, Andra Nelki", ARLIS/NA Newsletter, Vol. 3, No. 6 (OCTOBER 1975), pp. S8-S9 (JSTOR)
- Nina Auerbach. "Ghosts of Ghosts", Victorian Literature and Culture, Vol. 32, No. 1 (2004), pp. 277–284 (JSTOR)
- George Guffey. "Science Fiction: History-Science-Vision. by Robert Scholes, Eric S. Rabkin; Beyond the Gaslight: Science in Popular Fiction, 1895-1905. by Hilary Evans, Dik Evans; H. G. Wells and Modern Science Fiction. by Darko Suvin, Robert M. Philmus", Nineteenth-Century Fiction, Vol. 34, No. 1 (Jun., 1979), pp. 112–117 (JSTOR)
- Williams, David R. "Beyond the Gaslight (book review)." Library Journal 6/1/1977, Vol. 102 Issue 11, p1278. (EBSCO Masterfile)
- Lombardi, Robert. "Visions Apparitions Alien Visitors (book review)." School Library Journal. Feb85, Vol. 31 Issue 6, p92. (EBSCO Masterfile)
- Fraser, Robert S. "The Picture Researcher's Handbook (Book Review)." Library Journal. 10/1/1975, Vol. 100 Issue 17, p1809. (EBSCO Masterfile)
- Karlin, Daniel. "It isn't believing." Times Literary Supplement. 6/14/2002, Issue 5176, p36. Book review Seeing Ghosts. (EBSCO Masterfile)
- "Intrusions (book review)." Atlantic (02769077). Mar1982, Vol. 249 Issue 3, p89. (EBSCO Masterfile)
- "Harlots, Whores and Hookers", Kirkus, November 15, 1979
- Biography at Answers com
- Mary Evans Picture Library
- French biography on Hilary Evans
- Hilary Evans obituary by Wendy M. Grossman in The Guardian, 16 August 2011
- Obituary in The Daily Telegraph, 26 August 2011