I began my family tree research in my late teens. I sat down with my father and listed all family members past and present that he could remember. Still only eighteen, I moved from Merseyside to Wimbledon and bought a copy of Tracing Your Family Tree, by Jean Cole and Michael Armstrong. I was ideally placed to visit the capital’s repositories, but then hit a … Continue reading Digital v Physical Archives: a Personal Account, Part 1 OR a Little Bit of Family History
Originally posted on HistorianRuby: An Historian's Miscellany:
Thirty-two years after being built, Walton Prison in Liverpool witnessed its first execution. On 14 March 1887, Elizabeth Berry suffered the ignominy of being the first prisoner and one of only two women to be executed there. The execution chamber was hastily built. It appears that a reprieve for the prisoner was expected and when this was… Continue reading Walton Prison’s First Execution: Elizabeth Berry, Serial Poisoner?
On the night of 15 April 1912, Captain Edward John Smith died along with 1500 other people when RMS Titanic struck an iceberg and sank in the North Atlantic. Edward John Smith was born on 27 January 1850. In 1875 he earned his master’s certificate, a qualification necessary for him to serve as a ship’s captain. In 1880 he became a junior officer with the … Continue reading Titanic Captain Edward John Smith Lived Here
A couple of years ago my mother gave me a book, it’s old, it smells of ‘old book’, it’s more than a little bit tatty and is held together in parts with decades-old sticky tape. It’s precious. It belonged to my grandparents. My mother gave it to me and told me it belonged to her father and it was his favourite book. My grandfather, William … Continue reading My Grandmother’s Book
A guest post from George Boyland. George is a regular contributor to The Guardian’s Readers’ Recommend music blog. During World War Two, frightened Luftwaffe pilots, seeing the flak over Manchester and Liverpool, would turn back and drop their bombs over the last city before the North Sea – Hull. That city had it bad. But, apart from the East End of London, nowhere had it … Continue reading Guest Blog: a Post-War Childhood in Liverpool
I started this blog to share fascinating stories from history. Not least of those, are my family history posts. I have researched my family’s history on and off for three decades, with more off than on, and usually with an intense burst of activity after travelling to a specific archive or record office. This blog is now two-years-old and this is its 94th article! So I … Continue reading Tracing my Boyland and Gray Ancestors
In my article The Many Ways to Consume History, I gave examples of ways that I consume history, most examples were of public history and from a non-academic source. One of the ways I stated I consume history is by collecting antique postcards. This Easter Monday I visited a Postcard and Collectable Paper Fair that is scheduled for my local recreation centre once or twice a … Continue reading Using Postcards for Family History