22 November 1963: the Assassination​ of JFK

It used to be said that everyone could say where they were when they heard the news that President John Fitzgerald Kennedy was dead. It’s now 55 years since that shocking afternoon in Dallas, Texas, and there are obviously fewer people alive who can attest where they were that fateful afternoon. The President and his party, which included his wife Jackie, Governor John Connally and … Continue reading 22 November 1963: the Assassination​ of JFK

The Children of King George III and Queen Charlotte

King George III married Charlotte of Mecklenburg-Strelitz on 8 September 1761 at the Chapel Royal, St James’ Palace. Charlotte gave birth to fifteen children, with thirteen surviving to adulthood. George and Charlotte’s remarkable fecundity was assisted by Charlotte’s youthful age on marriage (17), which extended her married fertile years, increasing the likelihood of pregnancy. She also did not gain from the contraceptive benefits of sole … Continue reading The Children of King George III and Queen Charlotte

World War One: when War Reunited a Family

In Killed by Enemy Action: a Family Tragedy I wrote about my uncle Joseph Boyland, who was machine-gunned walking along Scotland Road, Liverpool, in September 1940. That was a story about a family devastated by the consequences of war, yet a generation earlier war had brought the Boyland family together.  John Boyland, Joseph’s father, fought for the Liverpool King’s 5th Regiment during World War One. … Continue reading World War One: when War Reunited a Family

25 December 1840, The London Evening Standard: A Report

Regular readers of my blog know that I often draw inspiration from the British Newspaper Archives. This does involve a small subscription, however, you can search and view a permitted three articles for free here. As it is the season of goodwill, I decided to share with you part of a report published on Christmas Day 1840 showing the festive food the poor of London were … Continue reading 25 December 1840, The London Evening Standard: A Report

Killed by Enemy Action: A Family Tragedy

On Tuesday 17 September 1940, Joseph Boyland, Joey to his brothers, was machine-gunned walking down Scotland Road, Liverpool. He died the following day at the city’s Royal Infirmary. Aged fourteen, he had left school and was about to ‘go to sea’. The Merchant Navy was a common occupation for young men in Liverpool at the time. The Liverpool Evening News briefly reported on 18 September … Continue reading Killed by Enemy Action: A Family Tragedy

Commemorating the Centenary​ of the End of the Great War #Armistice100

World War One ended at the eleventh hour, of the eleventh day, of the eleventh month of 1918. The Great War, as it was known then, was believed to be ‘the war to end all wars’. Of course, it wasn’t, and just twenty-one years later the world was at war once again. This weekend the world remembers and commemoration events large and small will ensure … Continue reading Commemorating the Centenary​ of the End of the Great War #Armistice100

Using Archives for Academic Research

In Digital Versus Physical Archives: a Personal Account I discussed my use of archives while researching my family history, describing how digital archives were the catalyst for my research in various archives in Britain and Ireland spanning several years.  With ten years’ archival research behind me, I decided to study for a history degree.  Those years were invaluable to me, as I headed into the archives … Continue reading Using Archives for Academic Research

Remember, Remember the Sixth of November: Commemorating Princess Charlotte 200 Years After her Death

Originally posted on HistorianRuby: An Historian's Miscellany:
Princess Charlotte Augusta of Wales ‘Alas, that England’s hope – her greatest pride, Should thou in youthful loveliness have died!’ The Morning Post, 7 November 1817 Monday 6 November 2017 is the 200th anniversary of the death of Princess Charlotte, the granddaughter of King George III. She died at Claremont in Surrey after a protracted fifty-hour labour… Continue reading Remember, Remember the Sixth of November: Commemorating Princess Charlotte 200 Years After her Death

Emma Clarke, Born 1875: Britain’s First Black Female Footballer

As I noted in The ‘Black Boy’ of the Philanthropic Society, much of Britain’s black history is hidden from the historical record, not least because histories were generally recorded of rich, white men;  women and minorities are hard to locate unless they married into the aristocracy, did something extraordinary or found themselves in trouble with the law. It also relies on the person recording any … Continue reading Emma Clarke, Born 1875: Britain’s First Black Female Footballer

In the News: English Heritage – ‘Nominate Female Candidates for New Blue Plaques’

Only 14% of London’s blue plaques celebrate women.  English Heritage is trying to redress the balance. Since they began a campaign in 2016 more than half of the plaques awarded have celebrated women. However, they are seeking more nominations from the public. What a wonderful way to engage with public history! You can check out the selection criteria here. One of the rules states that … Continue reading In the News: English Heritage – ‘Nominate Female Candidates for New Blue Plaques’

Royal Memorabilia: Must Have Mementoes​ or Kitsch to Ignore?

A few years ago, I failed to buy a commemorative dish memorialising the death of Princess Charlotte in 1817. I’ve bemoaned my loss of this ever since. I’ve browsed for another on eBay and have almost been tempted to buy again. Some of the Princess Charlotte memorabilia is very pricey, that said it is 200-years-old! Love it or loathe it, royal memorabilia is big business. … Continue reading Royal Memorabilia: Must Have Mementoes​ or Kitsch to Ignore?

Black History Month: Nursing in the NHS and Me

With the proliferation of #BlackHistoryMonth hashtags haunting various social media sites [I’m sure haunting is the correct term during October], you may have noticed that October is Black History Month in the UK.  It is the time that we celebrate our diversity, learn about other cultures and the people who have settled in Britain in the near and distant past. While we embrace our differences, during … Continue reading Black History Month: Nursing in the NHS and Me

The Sale of Arsenic Regulation Act 1851

The 1851 Act regulated the sale of arsenic by imposing a series of measures aimed to ultimately control the arsenic panic that gripped the country. The six parts to the Act covered: On every Sale of Arsenic, Particulars of Sale to be entered in a Book by the Seller in Form set forth in Schedule to this Act. Restrictions as to Sale of Arsenic Provision for … Continue reading The Sale of Arsenic Regulation Act 1851

The Children of King Edward VII and Queen Alexandra

Albert Edward, Prince of Wales married Princess Alexandra of Denmark on 10 March 1863 at Windsor Castle. The Prince and Princess of Wales, Bertie and Alix, as they were known, went on to have six children, five surviving to adulthood. The nine children of Queen Victoria and Prince Albert married into many European royal households and subsequently, King Edward VII was known as the uncle … Continue reading The Children of King Edward VII and Queen Alexandra