It is not always easy to trace Roman Catholics before c.1750. Their names were not generally recorded in parish registers of baptisms, marriages, and burials, since they avoided the ministrations of the established church. They were persecuted by the government, and therefore kept a low profile. The prime source for tracing them are the records of governmental persecution.
The word graffiti was originally a term which described man-made marks and scratches that adorn walls and rock faces. It includes ancient marks that are almost as old as the human race, through to spray paint in a modern day underpass. Thanks to the latter, graffiti has now acquired a negative reputation and become a byword for the wanton damaging of someone else’s property by daubing it with paint or gouging it with tools.
While I was doing some research in the land records for Bedfordshire on TheGenealogist recently, I came across an estate on a tithe map whose owner’s name I recognised as having connections to the island of my birth, not to mention a much better known US east coast state.
Child kidnapping, for a ransom, is luckily a relatively unusual occurrence. However, there have been particular cases that have remained in the public consciousness, as a kind of horror story to scare others with long after they have taken place. The most notable historic cases of child kidnapping have been in America. In what is regarded as the first high-profile American kidnapping case that involved both a ransom and extensive press coverage, the victim was never found. Today, it remains a high-profile unsolved case.
The Victorian era was a period of time in which men and women operated in separate spheres, with men being involved in the outside world of work and politics, whereas women were confined to the duties and responsibility of the home – which included being a dutiful wife and mother. Indeed, the cult of domesticity was so strong that the middle-class nuclear family was seen as the bedrock of society so that anything which challenged or threatened it was seen as potentially dangerous to society itself. Therefore, most Victorian women and especially middle-class women, knew from an early age that their futures involved marriage and motherhood.
TheGenealogist has just released over 12,000 records from 138 war memorials. This means that there are now a total of over 580,000 individuals listed on war memorials that are fully searchable in TheGenealogist’s Military Records collection, with photographs centred on their inscription. These memorials can give researchers an insight into education, rank, regiment and occupation of an ancestor.
The mid-19th century heralded the great era of civilian/occupational uniforms, including those worn by railway staff. Engine crews of early independently-run railway lines wore regular dress, but as scattered local lines developed into a larger network, some companies provided identifying livery-style clothing for their drivers and firemen. The first was the Sheffield, Ashton-under-Lyne and Manchester Railway, which in 1841 introduced uniforms of dark green cloth with red edging for engine crews. By 1848 Great Western Railway drivers and firemen were wearing blue trousers, white shirts, black neck-cloths and peaked blue caps, with dark blue peaked caps from then on favoured for engine drivers. By the late 1800s the standard engine crew uniform was jacket, trousers and cap, with oilskins or warm pilot coats for cold weather; for summer a working man’s lightweight slop jacket.
Monmouthshire is one of 13 historic counties of Wales and a former administrative county. It was formed from parts of the Welsh Marches by the Laws in Wales Act 1535. Between about the 5th and 10th centuries the Welsh Kingdom of Gwent covered a variable area roughly contiguous with Monmouthshire. At the time of the Domesday Survey in 1086 the Chepstow and Monmouth areas were, for accounting purposes, reckoned as parts of the English counties of Gloucestershire and Herefordshire respectively; the Normans built many stone castles in the region.
A lifesaving gas mask. A ration book, essential for the supply of food. A shelter stove that kept a family warm while they huddled in their Anderson shelter. A leaflet dropped by the Luftwaffe that was designed to intimidate Britain’s populace during the threat of invasion. A civilian identity card over-stamped with the swastika eagle from the occupied Channel Islands… The ordinary objects featured in this book, whether those produced in their millions to the far from ordinary or unique, all portray and exude the highs and lows of the British people during six years of war. This is the perfect book for students, historians, collectors and general readers, enabling a clear understanding of one of Britain’s most important historical periods.
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