The whole approach to medication in the 19th century was completely different from ours. These days a medicine that you buy in a pharmacy or get on prescription from the doctor has been properly tested, so you know what the ingredients are, and it has been studied in clinical trials to prove that it works. Neither of these things happened in the 19th century. Suppliers of a medicine didn’t even need to tell you what was in it.
Adding flesh to the bones of a family tree to really tell the story of your ancestors will often involve attaching photographs, images of certificates and even medals to files stored on your computer. This is easily done when you have a digital copy of the item; the challenge comes when you are visiting relatives who have a treasure trove of precious artefacts and documents to show you. The collection may contain photos, important documents, fragile records of personal and family history, detailed coins, jewellery, medals, hand-drawn art and other keepsakes all of which you would like to have a copy of and you really don’t want to let the opportunity to scan them pass.
We tend to investigate the lives of our ancestors through conventional written records, both public and private, but further evidence of their existence might sometimes be found etched on to aspects of the natural world (rocks and trees) as well as physical objects such as desks, doorposts, lintels, church pews, beds and windowsills (to name just the most obvious). These very tangible signs of generations gone by can better be analysed with some understanding of their context.
Data website TheGenealogist and the Norfolk Record Office have announced that they have signed an agreement to make Norfolk parish and other historical records available online for the first time. The registers of baptisms, marriages, burials and banns of marriage feature the majority of the parishes in Norfolk. On release the searchable transcripts will be linked to original images of baptism, marriage and burial records from the parish registers of this East Anglian county. Some of the surviving records date from as far back as the early 1500s.
Deaths at sea were for our ancestors a far-from-uncommon occurrence. Sea voyages were long and arduous, and – especially for those who had to scrimp and save to buy their passages – conditions were usually cramped and unsanitary. In such close confines, illnesses could and did spread rapidly throughout those on board. Those men who worked at sea battled with similar experiences of outbreaks of disease, largely due to minimal hygiene and lack of space. Most ships’ passengers and marine workers were also provided with poor food over a significant period of time, which did little to help stave off illness; quite apart from this, the dangers posed by the oceans and unpredictable weather were also very real.
Although, like many dress items, the definition of sandals is indistinct, they are generally perceived as outdoor footwear comprising a sole held to the foot by straps or bands passing over the instep and sometimes around the ankle. Made of leather, rope, leaves and rushes, wood, rubber and woven fabric, according to time and place, a key feature of sandals throughout history is that they leave much of the foot exposed. They are therefore most comfortable and practical in hot climates and during warm seasons, although they have also been adopted as fashion accessories.
A settlement at Bradford first grew up in Saxon times. After an uprising in 1070, during William the Conqueror’s Harrying of the North, the manor of Bradford was laid waste. By the middle ages Bradford, had become a small town centred on Kirkgate, Westgate and Ivegate. In 1316 there is mention of a fulling mill, a soke mill where all the manor corn was milled and a market. During the Wars of the Roses the inhabitants sided with House of Lancaster. Edward IV granted the right to hold two annual fairs and from this time the town began to prosper. Bradford grew slowly over the next 200 years as the woollen trade gained in prominence.
1918 was the fifth and final year of the Great War. With thousands of fresh American troops heading across the Atlantic to fight on the side of the Allies, Germany’s High Command knew it had to strike a decisive blow to turn the course of the war in its favour. The Allied counter-offensive on the Marne began in July and, with the Americans joining the fighting, the Germans were forced back to the Hindenburg Line. Starved of food and supplies, Germany faced inevitable defeat and sought terms for a peace settlement.
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