This year 11 November sees the 100th anniversary of the Armistice that marked the end of the First World War. We know that our ancestors serving in the military will have ceased hostilities on this day and prepared to come home. But what about all the members of our families back in Blighty who had waited so long and so anxiously for them? Newspaper accounts from the time describe celebrations that were spontaneous and exuberant. The first hours and days after the war ended were not the time for formal thanksgiving celebrations or parades (though these would come later); rather, they were a time for wild rejoicing and a casting-off of some of the restrictions of the war years.
As we near the end of our WW1 centenary commemorations, here we look back at some of the postcard images produced during the conflict and its aftermath. Printed picture postcards, a fashionable visual medium and form of postal communication since the late 1800s, came of age in the early 20th century. Besides traditional tourist views posted from holiday, in an era before radio or television picture postcards illustrated vividly the changing world: current affairs, political events, eminent public figures, popular performers, new inventions and fashions, as well as being used for business advertising and celebrating local scenes. Postcards expressed the Edwardian age, even influenced the way people viewed life, and in 1914 were perfectly placed to record visually the Great War.
From the blood-soaked trenches of the First World War to the beaches of Dunkirk, it certainly can’t be said Major William Gordon Mitchell led a quiet life. The centenary of the end of the First World War is a time to commemorate those who paid the ultimate price for their country. Despite the harrowing casualty figures, we often forget that many who served in the First World War did survive the conflict. It is thought nine out of every ten soldiers in the British Army who were in the trenches came home from the war.
In Westminster City Archives lies a small notebook. It’s almost identical to the lined exercise books you can still get today, only it’s covered in a dark blue, thin, leather. Inside, the writing is a mix of pen and pencil, scribbling and basic maths calculations, as though the writer is trying to add up his day’s spending in odd spaces on the page. The content is otherwise a bit odd. There are short passages, random sentences, hidden amongst write-ups of court cases and strange incidents.
The jewellery items known as brooches first served as practical fasteners for simple woven cloth garments. Primitive early brooches were formed from natural materials like bone or flint, metal brooches being worn from the Bronze Age. Throughout Celtic and Viking society circular metal pin brooches were used to secure shawls and cloaks, while Anglo-Saxon disc, annular and cruciform brooches also joined together fabric, for instance long brooches at the shoulders of tubular gowns. Varying decorative techniques characterised garment pins and brooches from different cultures, but ornate gold, silver-gilt or silver stone-set brooches always expressed wealth and status, as distinct from ornaments of base metal and glass beads.
At the time of the Norman Conquest, Berkshire formed part of the Earldom of Harold, and supported him staunchly at the Battle of Hastings. This loyalty was punished by very sweeping confiscations, and at the time of the Domesday survey no estates of any importance were left in the hands of Englishmen.
TheGenealogist has just released over four million outbound passenger list records for the 1950s. These records join the ever expanding suite of immigration, emigration, naturalisation and passenger list resources on the site. With the release of this decade of records, researchers can discover ancestors who departed from the UK by ship to destinations across the globe.
How were criminal children dealt with in the 19th and early 20th centuries? Over this 100-year period, ideas about the way children should behave – and how they should be corrected when they misbehaved – changed dramatically, and Emma Watkins and Barry Godfrey, in this accessible and expert guide, provide a fascinating introduction to this neglected subject. They also include a section showing how researchers can carry out their own research on child offenders, the records they will need and how to use them, so the book is a combination of academic guide and how-to-do-it manual. It offers readers cutting-edge scholarship by experts in the field and explains how they can explore the subject.
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